05 January 2024
Just about everyone knows that it is important to keep your teeth, gums, and tongue clean to maintain the health of your mouth. However, have you ever stopped to consider whether you should use a tongue scraper as part of your oral healthcare routine?
For some, using a tongue scraper is an entirely new concept. That's why we have created this article to explain what a tongue scraper is and whether or not it should be something you use daily to keep your tongue clean. Read on to learn everything you need to know and more on the topic.
What is a Tongue Scraper?
A tongue scraper is a simple hand-held device that you can use to clean your tongue. The benefit of a tongue scraper is that it can effectively remove build ups of food, dead skin, and other unwanted substances on your tongue. Using a tongue scraper will help keep your tongue clean and healthy, but is using one truly necessary?
Are Tongue Scrapers Necessary?
While a tongue scraper is a helpful tool that specifically cleanses your tongue, using one is not a requirement of a complete dental care routine. Instead, the use of a tongue scraper is something that you can include to complement the necessary components of your oral care habits. Read on through the next section to learn what those essential components are.
Best Habits for Daily Dental Health
While using a tongue scraper is not something that you need to do every day, there are dental tasks that you should perform daily. Mainly, you'll want to set up a regular schedule of brushing, flossing, and rinsing to ensure you're doing your part to keep your smile healthy and looking great. The sections below will help explain how that daily routine should play out.
Best Practices for Daily Brushing
The most important task when caring for your teeth at home is brushing. However, while this is a chore that we are all familiar with, there is some brushing technique advice that you might not be aware of.
The best way to brush is to use small circular motions to clean small sections of your mouth at a time. Slowly pass over the entire outer, inner, and chewing surfaces of your teeth. Rather than relying on a tongue scraper, you should also use your brush to thoroughly clean your tongue.
The American Dental Association recommends that you brush your teeth at least twice per day. Each time you brush, it should take at least two minutes or as long as it takes for your mouth to be sufficiently clean.
How Often to Floss Your Teeth
Although many of us are reluctant to do it, daily flossing is nearly as important as regular brushing. The reason is that your brush is often unable to reach the tight spaces between your teeth and near your gums.
By contrast, floss is capable of reaching those tight spaces to dislodge any food that is stuck there. As such, combining flossing with your brushing is often the best approach. Most experts also recommend flossing at least once per day as the best way to keep your mouth clean.
Finish Your Brushing and Flossing with a Rinse
An excellent final step when performing your daily teeth cleaning routine is to rinse your mouth with water or mouthwash. As you brush and floss, you'll loosen food and other unwanted particles from your teeth. Rinsing ensures that those particles exit your mouth entirely and helps to leave your mouth smelling fresh and clean.
Why Professional Cleanings Are a Must
Although the sections above outline a comprehensive mouth-cleaning routine, there is more to a complete dental health plan than at-home cleanings. Instead, it remains necessary to maintain ongoing appointments with an experienced dentist in your area.
While brushing, flossing, and rinsing help keep your mouth clean, professional cleanings take mouth cleanliness one step further. A professional cleaning takes care of any plaque and food bits that you cannot manage on your own.
Additionally, regular dental visits help you recognize potential dental complications so that your dentist can intervene quickly and prevent them from becoming a significant issue. Since the average person is unable to recognize such concerns, meeting with an experienced dentist is a must.
What Happens if You Don't Keep Your Mouth Clean
The majority of this article focused on how to keep your mouth clean. However, before we conclude, let's discuss some of the major downsides that can arise if you fail to care for the health of your teeth.
If you don't clean your mouth regularly, plaque will begin to build up on the surfaces of your teeth. As plaque reacts with the sugars you eat, it produces an acid that works to break down your tooth enamel. This process results in the small holes we call cavities.
When left unaddressed, cavities will only get worse and progress into more serious tooth decay and gum disease. If enough time passes, this can result in broken or rotten teeth that are beyond repair and must be removed to maintain the health of your mouth.
Rampant tooth decay is something that everyone should seek to avoid. The best way to do that is to follow the guidance in this article and establish a relationship with a trusted dentist in your area.
Find the Right Dentist for You
We cannot understate the importance of visiting a dentist for professional cleanings. Whether you use a tongue scraper or not, your at-home dental routine will not be enough to ensure you avoid tooth decay and the many problems it causes.
At Smile Venue Dental, we welcome new patients who are interested in improving their dental health. We provide thorough cleanings and a wide range of other dental services. If you are in the Tampa, Florida, area, reach out to us today to learn more about how we can serve you.