You already know how important it is to brush your teeth in order to keep your pearly whites clean and sparkling. But, what about the tongue? The tongue is often ignored. However, as it turns out, you should be taking a few more moments every day to clean your tongue. In this article, we will tell you why and how you should keep your tongue clean for health. 

Why keep your tongue clean for health

Given that digestion starts from your mouth, it’s very important to remove any toxins. Also, when you sleep, your digestion system is still awake, removing the toxins and depositing some onto the surface of the tongue.

Brushing, flossing and rinsing with mouthwash is not really enough to get rid of these toxins. Now, that your tongue is host to a lot of food particles and bacteria, it can only be eliminated by cleaning it. There are spots all over your tongue that could keep all these bacteria and toxins alive until it is removed.

If the tongue is not cleaned, all that bacteria can thrive on a day-to-day basis, leading to bad breath, tooth decay, discolored tongue, and even gum problems.

Scraping or Brushing the Tongue is Essential

Jihwa Prakshalana, or the Ayurvedic self-care ritual known as tongue scraping, is an ancient oral hygiene practice that eliminates bacteria, food debris, fungi, toxins, and dead cells from the surface of your tongue.

A tongue scraper is more effective at removing toxins that a toothbrush and dental research have proved this. It provides the most thorough cleaning by gently peeling away the thin layer of debris on the tongue’s surface.

Scraping the tongue also activates saliva production and the enzymes that initiate digestion. Also, your tongue is the first line of defense in your immune system and so it is essential to scrape your tongue to prevent toxins from being reabsorbed into your body.

How to Scrape your Tongue?

This Ayurvedic routing for maintaining oral health should be done daily in the morning on an empty stomach. Just spend a few moments after you brush your teeth. A tongue scraper is a long thin piece of metal that is bent in a U-shape.

Hold the two ends of it in both hands, stick out your tongue and place the scraper as far as you can go on the tongue. Gently scrape the surface of your tongue in one long stroke. Rinse the scraper and repeat until your tongue feels clean and is free of coating at least 5 to 10 times.

Get a good tongue scraper which is easily available and always rinse the scraper with warm water after each use. Choose a stainless steel/copper /silver scraper as opposed to plastic as they better in clearing your tongue.

Oil Pulling can Transform Oral Hygiene

Another ancient home remedy that greatly improves your oral health, keeping your teeth and tongue clean is that of oil pulling. It involves swishing oil around the mouth like a mouthwash. In contrary to contemporary mouthwashes that are too harsh, oil pulling is more effective with removing harmful bacteria in the mouth.

When you swish oil around the mouth, bacteria is swept away and gets dissolved in the oil. Oil pulling works with pretty much any oil, but the best is coconut oil and sesame oil. Both have antimicrobial properties.

Simply swish teaspoon of oil in your mouth, first timers can start out with 5 minutes and work their way up to 20 minutes. It has to be swished for at least 10-20 minutes to get maximum benefits so that the oil has time to absorb the toxins. Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as your mouthwashes which is an agony to keep in the mouth for just 2 minutes.

If you’re prone to bad breath, oral hygiene issues, tonsil stones or allergies, oil pulling is the best to keep your tongue and mouth clean overall.  Get the detoxifying effects of oil pulling and try it for yourself!

Parting Thought

Ayurveda gives a lot of importance to the tongue which is highly connected to various organs of your body. Purify your tongue and keep it clean by using the above methods.

Bad Breath

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