Your tongue may not develop cavities like the teeth, but it certainly holds germs and bacteria that pose risk to the nearby teeth and to your oral health. The germs and bacteria may cause tooth decay, bad breath, and gingivitis or gum disease if not properly removed. Most people say that it also leaves an icky feeling in their mouth. How does a person remove bacteria and germs from their tongue? The same way that you remove it from your teeth -you brush. It’s simple, really, and a task that’s well worth the minimal effort that it takes.
Bacteria and germs quickly accumulate on the tongue between the taste buds and other crevices. These bacteria and germ come from foods that we eat, drinks, and from simply opening our mouths and talking. People of all ages develop this film on their tongue. Our tongues are not smooth and bacteria/germs take advantage of the many hiding areas that are available to them. It is important to remove all of the bacteria and germs from these hiding places to protect the teeth and to keep the breath fresh.
This bacteria and germs are known as biofilm or a group of microorganisms that stick together on the tongue’s surface. Rinsing the mouth with water isn’t alone strong enough to rid the germs and bacteria from the tongue. Even if some of the bacteria are destroyed, the cells underneath the tongue survive and thrive. That is why it’s essential to clean your tongue and remove the bacteria and germs.
How to Brush your Tongue
Cleaning the tongue is simple and prevents many of the concerns we’ve discussed. Brush the tongue when you brush your teeth. Just a couple of seconds makes a big difference in your oral health, tooth cleanliness, and fresh breath. Use your toothbrush to remove the film from your tongue. Or, if you prefer, tongue scrapers are available for that extra-clean feeling.
The ADA says there is no evidence that using a tongue scraper cleans the tongue better, so purchase this item only if you want. Tongue scrapers are sold at drug stores and through many online sources. Brushing your tongue is just as simple as brushing your teeth. Brush the tongue back and forth and then side to side. Do not scrub, but ensure you thoroughly clean. Then, rinse the mouth with water. It’s that simple -and so beneficial.
Clean your tongue and protect your teeth. It’s just that simple. It’s far too easy and quick to skip, especially since so many bacteria and germs may live on the tongue.
Mountain View Dental is available to provide your family with regular dental exams and dental cleanings that prevent oral health issues. We can also help with halitosis problems if even brushing your tongue doesn’t offer a solution. Have questions? One of our dental professionals is standing by to provide you with the answer. We have a team of caring, compassionate dental experts who ensure your visit results in a great smile.