Calgary woman brushing her tongue

Why Bother Brushing Your Tongue?

So you’ve brushed your teeth and flossed your gums. All done? Not so fast! You forgot a key factor of your oral hygiene: cleaning your tongue! A clean tongue will not only contribute to your oral health, it will also keep at bay the dreaded problem that is bad breath. Did you know that the tongue is the source of 90% of oral malodour? So if you don’t want to be among the one in four people who have bad breath—or halitosis—make sure you’re taking proper care of your tongue.

Eliminating Bad Breath

But what exactly is causing this bad breath? There are bacteria on the back of the tongue that thrive on food particles and that produce a foul smell. So getting rid of bad breath is usually straightforward: a simple matter of tacking a minute onto your daily routine and thoroughly cleaning this surface.

How to Clean Your Tongue with a Toothbrush
The simplest method to clean your tongue is to use your toothbrush. Once you’ve finished brushing your teeth, thoroughly rinse your brush, add a little dab of toothpaste, and brush away the food particles found at the very back of your tongue. Work your way forward, brushing the entire surface. Make sure that you’re brushing the debris off your tongue and out of your mouth and that you’re not just moving it around.

If you’re not used to brushing your tongue, the contact with the back of the tongue could cause a gag reflex. This’ll disappear once you start cleaning your tongue regularly. So if you can’t reach the back of your tongue without gagging at the beginning, don’t worry: soon enough you’ll be able to get back there and get rid of every last unwelcome food particle.

How to Clean Your Tongue with a Tongue Scraper
If you’re finding that the toothbrush isn’t quite doing the trick, a good alternative is a tongue scraper, which many people find cleans the tongue even more effectively. Use the tongue scraper by inserting it as far back on your tongue as you can and gently scraping the surface such that you sweep the food debris and bacteria out of your mouth. Repeat this four or five times.

When your teeth, gums and tongue are clean and healthy, you’re already a long way towards achieving great oral health. For the rest, count on your local dentist. Along with brushing and flossing, professional examinations and professional teeth cleaning are two of the Canadian Dental Association’s Six Steps of Preventive Care.

The dentists at Skyview Ranch Dental Clinic in Calgary NE can meet all of your dental needs using the latest equipment and techniques. Come for an examination or a teeth cleaning or benefit from one of the many other dental services we provide. Contact Skyview Ranch Dental Clinic today!

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