Effectively Scraping And Brushing Your Tongue
As part of a thorough and hygienic oral routine, it is important that a person takes care to clean their tongue. Food passes the tongue on the way into the body, and the small grooves located on the top of the tongue are ideal for harboring broken down food and bacteria. A proper oral routine will include caring for the teeth, the gums and the tongue. This article examines the process and equipment needed to effectively clean your own tongue.
Use The Right Brush
Achieving a proper clean of all of your tongue is hampered by two factors. One is the difficulty in reaching the very back of your tongue to clean it thoroughly, and the other factor is the body's gag reflex. Having the correct equipment can mitigate both these issues. For brushing the tongue, purchase a flat and wide headed brush. This allows you to reach the back area easier than a regular toothbrush, and prevents you knocking your teeth or initiating the gag reflex. The bristles on a tongue brush are soft, and can be used to gently clean the whole tongue.
When you are purchasing a scraper, there is one important factor to keep in mind. Using a metal scraper will cause the gag reflex to happen less than when using a plastic scraper. Place the scraper as close to the rear of your tongue as possible, and drag it forward over your tongue and out of your mouth. Rinse the scraper and repeat. It is possible to purchase either a one handed scraper, or a two handed scraper, depending on your preference. If you still can't scrape without gagging, try digging your fingers of your other hand into your palm lightly as you scrape (you will need a one handed scraper to do this), the sensation of pain may take your mind off of the gag reflex. You should spend only around ninety seconds actually scraping your tongue if you are doing it correctly.
Follow Up With A Rinse
As you have brushed and scraped, it is likely that there will be food and debris dislodged from the grooves of your tongue. Get rid of this by rinsing your mouth out with a good, strong mouthwash. This helps to kill any other bacteria that may still on your tongue. It is also perfectly acceptable to rinse thoroughly with water to clean the tongue here. Aim to brush and scrape your tongue once a day.
You can, along with the tongue brush, purchase a cleaning gel that has been specially formulated to clean the tongue. This can help to dislodge and remove more of the debris in the grooves of the tongue.
If you're having issues with your tongue that involve you braces, don't be afraid to contact a professional like Perfect Smiles Orthodontics.