You brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss your teeth daily like clockwork. But how much time do you dedicate to cleaning your tongue? Have you ever given much thought to how dirty your tongue could be?
All those bumps, ridges, and tiny crevices on the surface of your tongue make it prime real estate for all kinds of bacteria. If you don’t give your tongue the attention it needs, that bacteria, particularly the harmful bacteria, will linger, multiply, and lead to all kinds of oral health issues.
To give your tongue a bit of necessary attention and rid it of those pesky invaders, consider implementing one of the following tongue cleaning techniques. Your mouth will thank you! Take a look, and then be sure to call us at 603-546-7460 to request your next appointment at Nashua Family Dentistry of Nashua, NH.
Brush Your Tongue
You may feel a little silly sticking out your tongue and brushing it with a toothbrush, but the results will speak for themselves. There are tiny bacteria and food particles lingering on your tongue under a thin layer of mucus. If you don’t clean it all off, it will start to give off an odor which contributes to bad breath and other oral health problems.
To brush your tongue clean, add a small dab of toothpaste to the bristles of your toothbrush. Then start by gently brushing the back of your tongue and move your way to the front of your mouth. Gently brush the entire surface of your tongue and then once it is thoroughly cleaned, rinse your mouth with water.
Use A Tongue Scraper
For a more thorough cleaning, you can use a tongue scraper. There are different kinds of tongue scrapers available, including soft, flexible plastic or stainless steel. Most of them work pretty much the same way: by scraping thin layers of mucus and debris from your tongue. Just like with brushing, start at the back of your tongue and work forward. Try to cover as much of the surface of your tongue as you can. Once you finish removing debris from your tongue, rinse with water.
The word scrape may sound a little intimidating, but as long as you use the tool properly, it’s painless. Just be sure to thoroughly clean your tongue scraper after each use.
How Often Should I Clean My Tongue?
To keep your breath fresh and to avoid a buildup of bacteria and food debris, it is recommended that you use a tongue scraper every time you brush your teeth. Ideally, once in the morning and once in the evening before bed.
When you first start cleaning your tongue, you may be surprised by how much debris is removed. But if you stick with it, you will begin to notice less debris as your tongue stays cleaner. Eventually, it may seem like you’re only removing clean spit. You may also notice fresher breath and a stronger sense of taste.
To learn more about how to keep your mouth, tongue included, clean between professional cleanings and checkups, call Nashua Family Dentistry. If you’re due for an appointment, go ahead and schedule your next checkup so you can be sure your mouth is as healthy as can be.