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Brushing Your Tongue: Why It’s Important (And How To Do It!)

Most of you probably know what you should be doing to maintain your oral health. Everyone’s heard of the recommended 2-3x a day brushing and flossing, along with some dentists adding mouthwash as an additional preventative measure.

But there may be one oral care step that you’re skipping. And this can lead to a variety of oral health issues, including bad breath and even more serious conditions. What are we talking about?

Brushing your tongue, of course! Your tongue collects bacteria and plaque just like your teeth and gums, and you should brush your tongue regularly to maintain a high level of oral health.

At Crossroads Family Dentistry, we specialize in preventative dentistry in Oklahoma City, and we believe brushing your tongue is very important. Here’s why.

Why Brushing Your Tongue Is So Important

At our family dentist in Oklahoma City, OK, we advise all our patients to brush their tongues.There are a number of reasons that brushing your tongue should be part of your daily oral care regimen.


  • Prevents tooth decay and periodontal disease –  Even if you brush well, bacteria or small food particles build up on your tongue can be transferred to your teeth and gums. Brushing well helps remove these potential problems, preventing tooth decay and periodontal disease.
  • Improves your breath – Bacteria on the tongue can often cause halitosis (bad breath). Simply brushing your tongue regularly allows you to remove this bacteria, resulting in fresher breath and a healthier mouth.
  • Bacteria can’t be removed just by rinsing – Mouthwash and gargling aren’t going to cut it. The bacteria on your tongue cling to a sticky film, and you need to brush or carefully clean your tongue in order to remove these bacteria.


How To Brush Your Tongue

There are a few different ways you can clean your tongue.


  • Toothbrushes – You don’t need a fancy tool to clean your tongue. Just brush your tongue with your standard toothbrush, using short side-to-side and back-and-forth strokes. You can do this either while you’re brushing your teeth, or afterward.
  • Specialized tongue scrapers – These devices are built to scrape the mucus layer on your tongue, thereby removing bacteria. They can be purchased inexpensively at any drugstore.
  • Toothbrushes with built-in scrapers – Some toothbrushes have scrapers built into the rear of the handle. You can brush your tongue first, then scrape it to ensure a comprehensive clean.


Regardless of the method you choose, you should brush your tongue at least as often as you brush your teeth. There’s no reason to do it separately from your normal cleaning so just add it to your daily ritual. 2-3x a day is what Dr. Faulconer, Dr. Dais, and Dr. Underwood of Crossroads Family Dentistry recommend.

Need An Oklahoma City Dentist? Come To Crossroads Family Dentistry Today!

At our family dentist in Oklahoma City, we deliver exceptional service to patients of all ages. Whether you need your regular 6-month dental hygiene checkup, or require more advanced services like cosmetic dentistry or Invisalign, Crossroads Family Dentistry is a great choice.

Need proof? Take a look at our past patient testimonials! So don’t wait. Contact us at (405) 631-0322 to schedule your appointment, or visit our office at 8101 S Walker, Ste D, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73139.

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