Why Brushing Your Tongue Is Important

You might be regularly brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day. But, are you brushing your tongue as well? If not, you are doing a great disservice to your oral health.

Brushing your tongue is important for the following reasons:

  • Brushing your tongue prevents tooth decay and periodontal disease. Even though you brush and floss daily and your teeth and gums are healthy, if you don’t brush your tongue, the bacteria on your tongue can reach your teeth and gums, causing tooth decay.
  • Improves breath. When there are bacteria present on the tongue, it causes halitosis or bad breath. Brushing the tongue helps to get rid of halitosis and improve your breath and oral health.
  • Prevents the formation of the black hairy tongue. Consumption of dark-colored food like coffee, wine, soda, etc causes the tiny bumps on your tongue, called papillae, to get stained. These stains appear dark and hair-like on your tongue making your tongue look black and hairy.

Tongue Is Covered With Bacteria

Your tongue turns brown after drinking coffee, and it also turns red after a glass of wine. Your tongue is also a target for bacteria just like your teeth. The tongue is not smooth. It has crevices and elevations on it, and the bacteria can easily hide underneath all that unless it’s removed by brushing.

Rinsing Doesn’t Work 

Getting rid of the biofilm or group of microorganisms that build upon the tongue is not an easy task. It cannot be simply removed using a mouthwash or drinking water.

When you rinse your mouth, only the outer cells of the biofilm are removed whereas the cells underneath are not. This bacteria leads to tooth damage and bad breath. So, it is mandatory to remove the bacteria by brushing or cleaning.

How to Clean Your Tongue 

You have to always brush your tongue whenever you brush your teeth.

  • Brush back and forth.
  • Brush side to side.
  • Rinse your mouth with water.

It is also important to remember not to brush too hard on your tongue to prevent the breaking of the skin.

Some people prefer to use a tongue scraper instead of their toothbrushes. But as per the studies conducted by American Dental Association, there is no evidence that the tongue scraper prevents bad breath.

Contact Oak Dentistry at (817) 375-0400 for any concerns or questions regarding your dental health. Visit our office at 7416 S Cooper St STE 100, Arlington, TX 76001, or our website to know more.