Tongue Cleaners 101 | A step-by-step guide to a healthy mouth

The oral care and dental hygiene industries have evolved beyond the sticks and twigs of cavemen, and even beyond just brushing your teeth twice a day. There is now a repertoire of products that dentists recommend for a longer-term approach to looking after your teeth which should feature in your daily regimen as strategic preventative measures. After all, you only have one set of pearly whites, so investing in them is likely to be a priority. As a local online supplier of premium and exclusive dental products, our Smile Shop team is committed to keeping our customers updated and clued up on any additional practices, products and habits that speak to taking the best care of your and your family’s teeth. One of these is a tongue cleaner. 


Tongue cleaners or scrapers don't get much press and are often overlooked. But we are here to shine the spotlight on them (and their unique benefits) in the pursuit of optimal oral health. 


Want to effectively eliminate bacteria in your mouth? Want to enhance your taste sensation? What fresher breath? Tongue cleaners are the answer (and perhaps chewing on some mint leaves).

TOngue cleaners are the answer to effectively eliminating bacteria in your mouth, enhancing your taste sensation, & giving you fresher breath.

Let's get into more detail to convince you to add tongue-cleaning dental tools to your shopping list:

#1 Tongue cleaners eliminate bacteria and toxins

Your tongue is considered the most overlooked sensory organ to clean. Yet, it harbours a considerable amount of bacteria and toxins that can contribute to periodontal problems, plaque buildup, tooth decay and bad breath. 

While you sleep and your body takes a break, the digestive system is busy cleansing itself. Toxins produced are sent to the surface of your tongue through internal pathways, causing the usual coating you see when you wake up in the morning.

From kids to adults, simply adding a tongue cleaner to your twice-a-day brushing routine helps eliminate these harmful toxins, promoting a healthier smile and fresher mouth

From kids to adults, simply adding a tongue cleaner to your twice-a-day brushing routine helps eliminate these harmful toxins, promoting a healthier smile and fresher mouth.

#2 Tongue cleaners enhance taste sensation

A clean tongue allows your thousands of taste buds to function at their best. Using a tongue cleaner to ‘scrape’ and remove the buildup of bacteria and oral debris on your tongue allows for better contact between taste buds and food/drink, resulting in a heightened taste sensation and making eating a much more enjoyable and flavourful experience.

#3 Tongue cleaners can contribute to fresher breath

One of the causes of bad breath is the build-up of odour-causing bacteria on the tongue from the various foods and drinks you consume during the day. To stunt the buildup, it is advisable to scrape your tongue at least twice a day, or, if you are concerned, then after every meal. 

#4 Tongue cleaners and how to use them

Tongue cleaners - made of plastic or stainless steel - are best used before brushing your teeth which helps eliminate loosened debris and provides a clean slate for the rest of your oral care regimen.

Tongue cleaners are made of plastic or stainless steel
  • Face the mirror and stick out your tongue.
  • The key is to start at the back of the tongue and gently scrape towards the front. (If you are susceptible to a gag reflex, start at the middle of your tongue and gradually move further back as you get used to the sensation). 
  • Rinse the tongue cleaner between strikes to remove the debris and facilitate effective cleaning. 
  • Repeat until you have scraped the entire surface of the tongue. 
  • Wash the tongue scraper with warm water and soap, dry it, and store it in a clean, dry area.
  • Pairing tongue cleaning with brushing and flossing enhances its benefits. This trifecta ensures a thorough cleansing of your entire oral cavity, leaving no room for harmful bacteria to thrive.

If you are tempted to think that brushing your tongue with your toothbrush will have the same effect as tongue cleaner, then you may want to skim this 2004 study in which researchers found thattongue scrapers removed 30% more volatile sulfur compounds on the tongue than a soft-bristled toothbrush.”

Tongue cleaners are simple, yet powerful players as part of any holistic and comprehensive oral care routine.

Browse our Smile Shop range of premium tongue-cleaning brands and products.
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