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Your teeth are not the only objects in your mouth that will benefit from your daily oral hygiene routine. Your tongue can also benefit from it because it has rough surfaces and contours that can harbor bacteria and promote plaque formation in your mouth. This can also promote bad breath. Many people like to include tongue cleaning in their oral hygiene routine to help reduce plaque development.

Here at Dr. James E. Gaff, we offer some basic recommendations to help you effectively clean your tongue. The simplest method for cleaning your tongue is to give it a thorough brushing after you have brushed your teeth. Try to brush around the sides of the tongue as well. A good rule of thumb is to brush gently for about one minute.

Some people prefer using a tongue scraper over brushing because it thoroughly cleans the plaque and bacteria from their tongue. Tongue scraper designs vary a little bit depending on the manufacturer. Most products have a plastic handle with a mildly sharp edge on one end.

When using a tongue scraper, you want to work from front to back, making multiple overlapping sweeps of the tongue. If you notice a buildup of material on the blade edge, you should rinse it off before making the next sweep.

There is no definitive clinical research that proves that brushing or tongue scraping is more effective. For most, it is simply a matter of personal preference.

If you would like to know more about how to clean your tongue or how to improve your oral hygiene routine in Jacksonville, Florida, you can call Dr. James E. Gaff at 904-641-2655 to schedule a consultation with your dentist, Dr. James E. Gaff.