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Why Prioritize Tongue Hygiene

We practice oral hygiene each day to remove plaque, lingering food particles, and other residues that naturally collect on our smiles. Without this at-home attention, these particles will start to deteriorate the health of our teeth and gums.

Good oral hygiene involves brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing daily. But some people do not realize that you need to take care of your tongue as well.

If you skip cleaning your tongue, you may put yourself in danger of serious oral health concerns. Read on to discover why cleaning your tongue is such a crucial step in your oral hygiene regimen and maintaining your good dental health.

Why Prioritize Tongue Hygiene

Dangers of Neglecting Tongue Hygiene

At first glance, your tongue looks smooth and pink. But this oral organ features hundreds of tiny bumps on its surface called papillae that allow you to taste. This gives your tongue a rough texture, and oral bacteria and other residues can easily become trapped between the bumps.

If food particles or excess bacteria linger on your tongue, they can easily spread to reach your teeth and gums and cause significant damage. You could face an increased risk of tooth decay or gum disease due to this missed step in your oral hygiene. Even if you brush your teeth and floss properly, your work can be undone because of these lingering residues.

Bits of food and bacteria will also begin to emit a foul odor if not removed from your mouth in a timely fashion. This could leave you with bad breath. Maximize preventative oral health care by making an effort to clean your tongue when completing your oral hygiene routine.

How to Properly Clean Your Tongue

Flossing and brushing your teeth alone will not make your tongue as clean as it needs to be. Adhere to the following steps in order to properly clean your tongue and achieve maximum benefits from your oral hygiene routine:

  • Complete your typical brushing and flossing regimen.
  • Brush your tongue with your toothbrush or a tongue scraper.
  • Rinse using mouthwash.

You must keep brushing your teeth and flossing to get rid of the plaque and other particles that accrue on your smile. Complete these steps first so that you can then focus on getting your tongue clean.

The bristles of your toothbrush can scrub away harmful residues on your tongue to ensure your mouth gets completely clean and fresh. Some people may prefer to use a designated tongue scraper for this task instead. It will not enhance the cleaning capability. But the assigned purpose can aid in remembering to complete this step in your routine.

Rinsing with mouthwash at the end of this oral hygiene regimen can boost your oral cleanliness. It will wash away some residues your toothbrush may have missed. Plus, if you choose an antibacterial mouthwash, you can reduce your risk of oral infections. Learn more about enhancing your oral hygiene regimen by talking to your dentist at your next regular check-up.