In addition to daily brushing, flossing, and routine dental check-ups and cleanings, an often overlooked part of oral care is tongue cleaning.
If you are not cleaning your tongue thoroughly and adequately, this mistake will likely lead to bacterial overgrowth, plaque buildup, and bad breath.
Tongue cleaning will also give you a fresher, cleaner feeling in your mouth, and it can even improve your sense of taste.
Two Ways to Clean Your Tongue
The most effective way to clean your tongue is to use a tongue scraping tool that is specifically designed for this purpose.
- Stick out your tongue and place the scraper at the back of your tongue.
- Gently pull the scraper forward, using light pressure.
- Rinse off the scraper under warm water after each stroke.
- Spit out any excess saliva.
- Repeat multiple times as needed.
- Clean the scraper tool and store it safely after each use.
You can also clean your tongue with a toothbrush. It may be slightly less effective, but still very helpful and typically more convenient.
- Stick out your tongue as far as comfortable.
- Brush lightly forward and backward, up and down your tongue.
- Spit out saliva as needed.
- Rinse off your brush with warm water.
- Continue to brush the whole surface of your tongue.
You should be cleaning your tongue as often as you brush your teeth – at least twice every day.
Choose the best method for you and make tongue cleaning part of your daily oral care routine.
It is also recommended to rinse with mouthwash for an extra level of cleanliness and freshness.
It’s Never Too Late To Improve Your Oral Care Routine
If you have not been cleaning your tongue correctly, or not at all, it’s never too late to start.
Even a single, proper tongue cleaning can make a noticeable difference in reducing that day’s bad breath, but consistent practice is essential for the best results.
Cleaning your tongue is an easy, convenient way to improve your oral health and hygiene.
If it helps to have a separate tool specifically for tongue cleaning, invest in a good tongue scraper and keep it with your other supplies.