A clean tongue is vital for good oral hygiene. Most of you have probably had a dentist at some point in time show you how to properly brush your teeth, but did he maybe forget to mention the tongue? All it takes is a few seconds to give it a good brush and greatly improve your oral health.

The mucosal surface of the tongue has many mounds and taste can be distinguished by their shape: on some of these mounds taste receptors are present. “Due to its special form, the tongue deposits and accumulates residues of food and other substances we ingest. Not only this, but also sugars and bacteria take over the ravines of its surface, “explains Dr. Stefano Rizzi, Head of Oral Surgery of the Dental Centre at Humanitas hospital. “The tongue – he adds – in spite of cleansing itself, must be kept clean “independently” as well. The tongue rubs on the palate and is “rinsed” even when we drink water but this is not enough.”




How to properly clean your tongue

“Once a day, you could devote a time to cleaning the tongue, although it would be better to do so constantly, or every time you brush your teeth.There are toothbrushes designed just for cleaning the tongue, they can be seen as small spatulas that can also be found on the back of common toothbrushes. In their absence, you can resort to using the toothbrush you use daily, though it is important that it has bristles of medium hardness. It is enough to just gently rub the surface of the tongue in order to get rid of food debris and bacteria “suggests the specialist.


Are mouthwashes or other solutions good for the tongue?

“Certainly, mouthwashes are both refreshing and act as a disinfectant: the action is complete for the entire oral cavity: teeth, gums, tongue, mouth and mucous membranes. Getting rid of bacteria on the tongue can help eliminate a possible cause of bad breath.”


Why is it important to keep a clean tongue?

“It is said that the tongue is the mirror of the welfare of a person: just think of how many times doctors have told patients to pull out their tongues! Remember that in addition to keeping it clean, appearance and color must also always be observed. The tongue is the indicator of certain diseases, such as gastrointestinal. It can also be the site of inflammation: if it does not get better, it is best to turn to a specialist.”

“Every sign of suspicion or any abnormal lesion should not be underestimated.In fact, the tongue is the part of the oral cavity that is most susceptible to cancer. If diagnosed in time, these cancers are fortunately very debilitating, “concludes Dr. Rizzi