Wethersfield Dental Group Blog
December 10, 2019
Your tongue is covered in hundreds of tiny papillae, which are the finger-like projections that give your tongue its rough texture. Interestingly, these papillae form a pattern on your tongue that’s just as unique as your fingerprints. They also create a carpet-like surface on your tongue that easily harbors plaque, bacteria, food debris, and dead skin cells. This can lead to bad breath and a number of other oral health issues. In addition to scheduling routine visits with a dentist to make sure your tongue stays healthy, there are some easy ways to keep it clean and improve your overall health in the process. Learn more below!
Why Is It So Important To Clean Your Tongue?
The foundation of good oral hygiene includes regular checkups with a dentist and maintaining your teeth and gums by brushing and flossing. But since your tongue harbors an estimated 50% of the bacteria in your mouth, you don’t want to neglect it. This bacteria contributes to bad breath, cavities, and gum disease, so the cleaner you can keep your tongue, the better.
What’s the Best Way To Clean Your Tongue?
You can keep your tongue clean and healthy by adding just a minute or two to your oral hygiene routine each day. Here are several options to experiment with:
- Use your toothbrush – A toothbrush is perhaps the easiest, most “no fuss” way to clean your tongue. However, if you have a gag reflex you may find it easier to do this at night as opposed to first thing in the morning. After brushing your teeth, rinse your brush off and spend 15-30 seconds brushing the entire surface area of your tongue. Then rinse again. You can also lightly brush the roof of your mouth and gums if you’d like.
- Use a tongue scraper – A tongue scraper is a simple, inexpensive tool that you can find online or in many drugstores. To use it, grasp both of the handles and glide it over your tongue several times with light, even pressure, rinsing it off each time.
- Use antiseptic mouthwash – Swishing with mouthwash certainly isn’t a substitute for brushing and flossing. With that said, using an antiseptic formula once or twice a day is a great addition to any oral hygiene routine. It’s a simple way to kill bacteria, reduce plaque on your tongue, and freshen your breath.
It’s easy to focus on your teeth and gums alone and forget about your tongue. But with just a little extra effort each day, you’ll keep your tongue a lot cleaner and improve your overall oral health at the same time.
About the Author
Dr. Ukti Phadnis is a family dentist and a graduate of the UConn School of Dental Medicine. As a strong advocate for good oral hygiene habits, she always gives her patients tips for keeping their tongue clean and minimizing bad breath, cavities and gum disease. If you’d like more information about cleaning your tongue or have any questions, you can reach Dr. Phadnis via her website.
December 7, 2019
It’s easy to have mixed feelings about traveling for the holidays. On one hand, you get to see friends and family, enjoy a break from the daily routine, and indulge in plenty of delicious food. On the other, you have to deal with winter weather and crowded airports! But another thing that can quickly put a damper on your holidays is dealing with a dental emergency away from home. You can always see an emergency dentist for care, but it’s a lot easier to simply prevent dental problems altogether. Keep reading below for 5 easy tips anyone can use to keep their smile healthy over the holidays.(more…)
November 14, 2019
Did you know that certain foods that you eat can cause your sleep apnea to get worse? On the flip side, there are also some snacks you can incorporate into your diet to help you have a great night of rest. The holidays are all about indulging in delicious homemade meals, but without the right knowledge, you may be eating foods that make your sleeping condition worse than it already is. Knowing what foods to avoid and what ones are safe can help you avoid sleep deprivation during the holidays. Read on to learn what foods you can indulge in and which ones are best to avoid.ß(more…)
November 6, 2019
Flu season is often filled with endless drainage, sniffling, and sneezing. For most people, it’s so bad that they would try every home remedy and medication to dry up their body so they never have to put another Kleenex to their raw, red nose again. While having a cold or the flu may put you out of commission for a couple days, it’s still important to take care of your mouth, even if that means having to get off the couch. Here are five oral health tips for flu season from your dentist so you don’t have to tackle physical and dental illnesses at the same time.(more…)
October 31, 2019
For many families, Halloween means an evening of spooky fun, but once you get back home from trick-or-treating you’ll have a new horror to face: trying to protect your children from cavities after they just built up a stockpile of candy. This might seem difficult, but luckily your dentist can offer 5 Halloween candy tips that can help make sure those treats don’t ultimately lead to a dental emergency.(more…)
October 9, 2019
Smoking. Chewing on ice. Snacking on candy throughout the day. These are all examples of habits that many of us have that we all know can wreak havoc on our teeth. However, there are a lot of other everyday acts that hurt your teeth that many people might not know about. Let’s look at 4 of them, and what you can do to protect your pearly whites from damage.(more…)
September 15, 2019
Fall is already here! Instead of indulging in beachy drinks like fancy lemonades and margaritas, you’ll be making the switch to flavored coffees and hot chocolate to keep you toasty in the brisk weather. Not only are they delicious, but they also help get you in the mood for the upcoming holiday season! You’ve probably never considered whether hot drinks are bad for your teeth. Instead of putting your oral health in harms way, follow these four tips so you can keep drinking your delicious seasonal beverages without having to worry about cavities or gum disease.(more…)
September 4, 2019
Your gums are the strong and sturdy foundation that secures your teeth, protects your facial bones, and wards off oral health problems and harmful oral bacteria. If they’re not healthy, it could impact your overall wellbeing and result in serious issues like tooth loss. While visiting your dentist every six months is a great way to prevent issues from occurring, there are additional ways you can take care of your gums at home. Read on to learn how implementing these five foods into your diet can keep them healthy and strong.(more…)
August 30, 2019
Now that school is back in session, it’s time to start packing those lunches. It’s crucial to pack foods that you know are healthy for your kid. However, a lot of foods that market themselves as healthy can actually be detrimental to their little teeth. Many of them are full of so much sugar that your little one might end up needing fillings from their children’s dentist. How can you know which foods to pack and which to avoid? Fortunately, we’ve put together this handy guide below.(more…)
August 15, 2019
When it comes to options for replacing missing teeth, dental implants are usually your dentist’s first recommendation. Why? Because they’re truly in a class of their own. They replace not only the crown, but the root of the tooth as well, preserving your oral health for decades to come. However, there are a lot of myths out there about implants. Read on below as your implant dentist dispels 4 of them.(more…)