Tongue scrapers are dental tools that you can buy that help to remove debris and bacteria from your mouth. You can either buy a specific tongue scraper tool, or most floss sticks double as a tongue scraping option. Unlike brushing your teeth, tongue scraping isn’t all that essential when it comes to having great oral hygiene, but some people regularly clean and scrape their tongue because they like the way it feels.
What Do Tongue Scrapers Do?
Tongue scrapers help to remove food particles or any other debris and bacteria that collect on its surface, which, while it may feel good, doesn’t have much of a useful purpose. That’s because bacteria on your tongue can grow back just as fast as you remove it. Others claim that tongue scrapers are beneficial because they help to keep your breath fresh, but there is no scientific evidence that suggests tongue scraping prevents bad breath or improves halitosis.
However, some people like the feel of a “clean tongue,” so they add tongue scraping to their daily oral health routine. If you’re going to use a tongue scraper, start at the back of your tongue and pull the scraper forward, washing off any particles the device collects. Make your way across the entire surface of your tongue, always pulling the device forward. Also, if you want to clean your tongue but don’t want to invest in a tongue scraper, you can clean it using your toothbrush after you’ve brushed your teeth.
Oral Health Routine
Tongue scraping can certainly be part of a good oral health routine, but you shouldn’t do it in place of other, more worthwhile cleaning techniques. If you want to use a tongue scraper, that’s a personal choice, but you’re going to have better oral hygiene if you focus on these four factors each and every day.
- Brush your teeth at least twice a day using fluoride toothpaste.
- Floss and clean between your teeth daily.
- Eat a healthy diet that doesn’t involve overly sugary or acidic options.
- See your dental health professional for regular checkups and cleanings.
If you do all of the above options and want to add tongue scraping to your dental health regimen, go for it. However, if you don’t always hit all four of those recommendations, focus on consistently hitting all those categories before trying to add tongue scraping to the routine. For more information on improving your oral health, or to set up an appointment, reach out to Dr. Brooks’ office today.
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