When we think about oral health, the image that comes to mind is usually that of shiny white teeth and healthy gums. Having a clean tongue is often forgotten, yet it is vital for proper oral hygiene. Cleaning the tongue is integral to removing food particles, bacteria, dead cells, etc., from the mouth. These particles can appear as a white coating on your tongue and can lead to a whole suite of problems ranging from bad breath to cavities and even stomach issues. Thus, it is important that we regularly clean the surface of the tongue. Here at Fountains Dental Care, our dental professionals recommend using a tongue scraper for efficient cleaning. It is a small, slightly rounded tool made of plastic or metal. It is used by people to scrape the surface of the tongue clean. Let us now look at some of the advantages of tongue scraping.
One of the main causes of tooth decay is plaque, which is caused by the buildup of bacteria. The tongue is an area where this bacteria can quickly accumulate and speed up cavities. Thus, tongue scraping is important as it prevents bacteria buildup by keeping the tongue clean. Clinical studies have shown that regular tongue scraping can reduce up to 80% more bacteria than just brushing.
Bacterial buildup, along with dead cells, food particles, etc., on the tongue can also cause bad breath. It is said that close to 90% of all cases of halitosis or bad breath are caused by the buildup of naturally occurring bacteria in the mouth. In a 2005 study, it was found that regularly using a tongue scraper for a week resulted in a significant reduction of Mutans streptococci and Lactobacillus bacteria, both of which are known to cause bad breath.
It is in your mouth that the process of digestion first begins. It is here that the enzymes in your saliva break down the food particles for easier digestion. If your tongue isn’t clean at this point, it can interfere with the functioning of the enzymes and also hamper your sense of taste. Also, the presence of oral bacteria can adversely affect a person’s gut health. It can weaken the stomach and hamper the body’s ability to fight off bacterial infections.
Thus, keeping your tongue clean is an important element of proper oral health. Scraping the tongue using a tongue scraper is considered the most effective method for cleaning the tongue. While some toothbrushes come with a rough side for cleaning the tongue, it does not clean as effectively as a scraper does. As we have seen, keeping the tongue clean is not only important for your oral hygiene but can also improve your overall health, especially your digestive health. If you have any more concerns or queries regarding how to efficiently incorporate tongue cleaning into your oral care routine, we at Premier Family Dental can help you out. Call us at 480-222-8083 or contact us online to speak to our dental care professionals.