Brushing the teeth two twice a day without cleaning the tongue is as good as not brushing at all.
This is because the tongue is a breeding ground for bacteria and when not cleaned, it causes everything from bad breath to infections.
It is important to note that the tongue is not just contained with harmless saliva. It’s a carrier of biofilm or a group of microorganisms. And unfortunately, getting rid of it isn’t as simple as drinking water or using mouthwash.
As a matter of fact, it’s difficult to kill the bacteria in the biofilm because, for example, when mouth rinses are used, only the outer cells of the biofilm are destroyed; thereby leaving the cells beneath the surface to thrive, which often lead to bad breath and even tooth damage.
Be that as it may, it is not encouraged to use force to brush the tongue. With gentle brushing, the tongue will be cleaned of the mucus trapping the bacteria that are usually in abundance on the surface.
How to brush the tongue
After brushing the teeth, use the bristles to gently brush the tongue in these easy steps:
- After brushing the teeth, reach for the back of the tongue with the same brush of a tongue scraper and then work this forward towards the mouth opening,
- Brush the surface of the tongue using gentle strokes. Don’t apply too much pressure so as not to tear into the skin which can open up the area to infection.
- Rinse with water and spit just like you would brush the teeth and you’re done!
Brushing the tongue is one way to get rid of bad breath permanently and it’s endorsed by dental experts so don’t be afraid to brush away!
- Better breath
The bad bacteria in your mouth are one of the primary sources of bad breath. The good bacteria in your mouth will do their best to fight off the foul-smelling bacteria, but they need health. By scraping or brushing your tongue, you will remove the layers of bacteria that cause stinky breath.
As the bacteria cover your taste buds, you may find that the flavors of your food are muted. By cleaning your tongue you can expose more of your taste buds and enjoy richer flavors in your food.
- Dental health
Like we mentioned above, the bad bacteria in your mouth cause cavities and gum disease. By removing the bacteria on your tongue, you can improve the overall health of your mouth and potentially avoid a trip for cavity filling at the dentist.
Monrovia patients can either scrape their tongue with a specially designed tongue-scraper or use their toothbrush.
Cleaning your tongue usually makes bad breath go away, but if it’s still a problem, you may want to consult with a dentist or your doctor. Your problem could be more serious.
Bad breath can be caused by tooth decay; infections in your mouth, nose, sinuses, or throat; medications; and even cancer or diabetes.