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Is Tongue-Scraping Worthwhile? Ask Our Dentist

Admittedly, tongue scraping does not have a pleasant sound to it. In fact, it sounds uncomfortable at best! But as our friendly dentist at Great Smiles Dental explains, it’s a proven method of enhancing your oral health. And it’s not painful at all!

Here’s what tongue scraping is all about and how to do it correctly. Our tongues are repositories for bacteria, food particles and debris which cause bad breath. Using mouthwash only masks the odor, as opposed to removing the culprits.

Besides resulting in fresher breath and possibly a sharper sense of taste, ridding our mouths of bacteria provides another defense against tooth decay, gum disease and other problems.

What you’ll need to give this a try is a tool called (what else?) a tongue scraper available in plastic, stainless steel and other materials. It looks a bit like an inverted spoon, and in fact you can use an ordinary household spoon or even your toothbrush as a tryout.

  • Now, standing at the mirror, open your mouth, stick out your tongue and place the rounded edge of the scraper gently at the back of the tongue. If you feel your gag reflex kicking in, start in the middle of the tongue.
  • Pull the scraper forward from the back to the tip.
  • Wash the scraper off and repeat one more time,
  • Clean the scraper thoroughly with soap and warm water.
  • This short process can be repeated as often as needed,

There really isn’t a downside to this simple process. Just be gentle, especially at first, when placing the scraper to avoid triggering the gag reflex, and make sure the scraper doesn’t have any sharp or uneven edges. If you notice your tongue has a “hairy” appearance or an unusual color, please contact our dentist for an evaluation.

Here’s another simple way to improve your oral hygiene: Visit our friendly dentist at Great Smiles Dental regularly for checkups and cleanings! Please contact us today for an appointment.

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