Many people do not know how to clean their tongues or why it is important! Tongue cleaning is an essential component of oral health that is often overlooked. If you are not cleaning your tongue, now might be the time to start!
There are two main reasons why tongue cleaning is very important: 1) it helps get rid of bad breath, and 2) it can remove bacteria in your mouth.
Why Does a Tongue Harbor Bacteria?
The tongue is one of the most fascinating parts of the human body. Tongues help us taste through tiny “buds.” But those buds are actually closer to hair, which makes tongues very good at trapping bacteria. Saliva, sugar, and bacteria can get stuck in between those little hairs, which makes the tongue quite the dirty surface.
Removing the Bacteria on Your Tongue
When you remove the bad bacteria from your tongue, it helps prevent cavities and bad breath. Cavities occur when bacteria interact with sugar and get stuck on your teeth. If you clean your tongue, the amount of bacteria in your mouth decreases significantly!
Tongue Cleaning Helps with Bad Breath
Bacteria also contributes to bad breath. That is why cleaning your tongue often results in a cleaner-smelling breath.
Cleaning your tongue is especially helpful if you struggle with morning breath. Morning breath is caused by bacteria in your mouth processing any leftover sugar or other particles while you sleep, and then you wake up with bad breath because of the waste left behind by the bacteria. Reduce bad breath by using a tongue scraper or the back of your toothbrush.
The Amazing Benefits of Tongue Cleaning
There are so many other benefits to consistently cleaning your tongue. Because your tongue is part of your mouth and therefore your oral health, its care is a very important part of keeping you happy and healthy. Here are some other reasons why consistently cleaning your tongue is a good idea:
- Improved Aesthetics: Over time, cleaning your tongue can lead to a tongue that looks clean, without any graying or discoloration. Have confidence in not just your teeth but your whole smile.
- Better Tasting Food: Bad breath and a dirty tongue can affect how you enjoy your food, especially your morning meal. Taking the time to clean your tongue at night will set you up for a more tasteful morning.
- Happier Gums: Removing the bacteria on your tongue will help you keep your gums happy, as gums are often irritated by excess bacteria in the mouth.
- Reduced Amounts of Cavities: Cavities are less likely to happen if you have a good oral hygiene routine that cares for not just your teeth but your tongue and gums.
Tongue cleaning can be an important aspect of a long-lasting smile. Ask our dentists at Pickens Family Dentistry for a tongue scraper and a demonstration at your next appointment!
How to Clean Your Tongue
There are two safe ways to clean your tongue. You can get a tongue scraper from your local dentist, or buy one from a pharmacy near you. Use the tongue scraper as directed on the package, gently scraping from back to front over the entirety of your tongue.
You can use the back of most toothbrushes to clean your tongue. This may not be as effective as a tongue scraper, and not all toothbrushes have this feature, so we recommend a tongue scraper if at all possible.
Maintain Your Tongue Health with Pickens Family Dentistry
Come in for a cleaning and check-up today, and our dentist can demonstrate the best way to keep your tongue clean. We give our visitors well-rounded oral care and give them the tools and education they need to keep a beautiful smile.