When talking about oral health, the teeth and gums always seem to be the main focal point – and they should be because they are important components. But, there is more to your mouth than just your teeth and gums.
In fact, one of the most important organs in your entire body is the tongue. Crown Dental is here to offer you some fun and interesting facts about our tongues, so we can all appreciate the huge role that it plays in our oral health.
Thanks to Colgate, we are providing you with the following fun facts:
- The anatomy of the tongue: the average human tongue is four inches long and has eight muscles.
- Taste: our tongues can taste different flavors thanks to our friends… taste buds. Our tongues can have anywhere between 2,000 to 10,000 taste buds and about 50 to 150 receptor cells in each.
- Sensitivity: the very tip of the tongue is the most sensitive part of our body and this sensation actually offers two benefits. The first is that it helps give your tongue the ability to make things feel larger than they are, which helps you notice unwanted things that could appear in your food – for example, dirt or hair. The second is that the sensitivity allows it to search the mouth for leftover food after eating.
- Digestive organ: the tongue is actually considered a digestive organ because it aids in the chewing process and is a key component in your ability to swallow.
- Ability to speak: Even just a slight change in the tongue placement can greatly alter the sound you produce! So imagine what it would be like talking without a tongue… would we be able to talk at all?
- Tongue hygiene: as you probably know, bad breath is directly correlated to bacteria on the tongue – and in the US, the general population that experiences bad breath is 50 percent. Having good dental hygiene is representative of how well you care for your tongue. The tongue can trap lots of unwanted bacteria, but there are ways to take care of your tongue and keep it in good health.
Tips for cleaning your tongue to ensure good oral health
There are many reasons why you should take special care of your tongue – one main reason being to get rid of unwanted bacteria that results in bad breath.
Cleaning your tongue is easy. Simply use a soft-bristled toothbrush or a tongue scraper. Using a toothbrush helps brush off the excess bacteria similarly to how you clean your teeth. A tongue scraper is a bit different and it works to gently peel away that thin layer of debris and mucus coating that sits on the top of your tongue.
Cleaning your tongue is something that you should be doing every day. It wouldn’t hurt to clean your tongue twice daily – both times that you typically brush your teeth. Since bacteria grows fast, consistently cleaning your tongue can help remove the excess bacteria and reduce build-up.
Here at Crown Dental, we want you to have the best overall oral health possible and this includes taking extra-special care of your tongue! 🙂