In the face of maintaining an adequate brushing and flossing routine, brushing our tongues might often get put on the backburner, or even largely ignored. It might seem like it’s okay to skip out on cleaning our tongues, but there are actually a lot of pitfalls that come along with failing to adequately clean this important structure of the mouth.
Below, Audubon Dental Center goes over a few reasons why cleaning your tongue is in your best interest when it comes to fighting bad breath and tooth decay. We take pleasure in providing our patients and readership with education that will help them enjoy healthier, happier smiles.
First of All, Your Tongue is Covered in Bacteria!
It’s probably not the most flattering thing to think about, but there are swarms of bacteria covering the tongue. Think of your tongue as a soft, comfy bed for bacteria, which accumulate in crevices all over the tongue and in between structures of the mouth. That’s why it’s a good idea to really get in there and give your tongue a good sponge bath with your toothbrush twice a day.
Don’t Settle for Simply Rinsing
Maybe you rinse your mouth out a few times a day and you count that as washing your tongue. There is a sort of biofilm covering your tongue made up of microorganisms that have a way of sticking together strongly. There are actually layers of biofilm that need to be scrubbed away from the surface of the tongue that rinsing will fail to address.
How to Effectively Clean Your Tongue
Of course, we wouldn’t tell you about how important it is to brush your tongue without telling you how to do it. First, opt for a back and forth, side-to-side technique (which you wouldn’t use for your teeth — use circular motions when cleaning your pearly whites). Make sure to brush for a good 30 seconds to 1 minute, making sure to get all the surfaces of your tongue. Rinse out your mouth thoroughly and you’re all good!
How to Deal with Lingering Bad Breath
Changing your diet, eating cleaner, healthier foods, and staying away from alcohol and tobacco will help your breath stay minty fresh. Of course, if you have lingering bad breath that you’re wondering what to do about, give us a call today at Audubon Dental Center. We have a long track record of helping patients of all ages with a variety of oral health and mouth issues.