If you spend the full two minutes twice a day brushing your teeth, we applaud you. You are making a dramatic impact on the health of your smile. However, if you are forgetting (or purposely neglecting) to brush you tongue too, you are missing even more important benefits. Thorough tongue brushing, not just a few swipes, can be one of your most powerful prevention tools for both your oral health and overall health.
Brushing your tongue on a regular basis helps prevent the following:
- Bad Breath:
- That foul odor coming from your mouth is more than likely caused by bacteria inside. Instead of masking your bad breath with a mint or mouthwash, scrub away your bad breath at its source by uprooting bacteria on your tongue.
- Tooth Decay:
- You are basically sabotaging your diligent tooth brushing efforts if you neglect your tongue. You may be getting your teeth squeaky clean, yet if you don’t brush your tongue, you are allowing harmful bacteria on your tongue to recoat those pearly whites within minutes. Bacteria and other destructive microorganisms can cause tooth decay and gum disease over time.
- Banishing the bacteria on your tongue before it travels down your throat can help prevent colds, strep throat as well as ulcers and digestive disorders.
- Did you know that soft plaque is made up of bacterial derivatives which are originally produced by the tongue? It only takes 12 hours before soft plaque hardens and threatens your smile.
Go ahead and make the most of your time with your toothbrush. After you polish your pearly whites, give your tongue a good scrubbing. Don’t just brush the top, but be sure to also clean the sides and underneath your tongue too.