Kids always seem to get great satisfaction from sticking their tongue out at someone they find annoying. Occasionally, we still enjoying doing it as an adult, don’t we? Come on, tell the truth!
As great as it is for expressing our distaste for something, our tongue also plays a more serious role in daily activities such as tasting, eating, swallowing, and speaking clearly. As well, the condition of our tongue plays an important part in achieving a mouth that’s happy and healthy.
Consider some vital steps can you take to help keep your tongue in tip-top shape:
1. Clean your tongue—The same way dirt gets trapped in the fibers of a carpet, harbor the grooves and tiny hairs on the back of your harbor bacteria. If your tongue isn’t cleaned properly, this bacteria can lead to chronic bad breath, as well as other oral health concerns. Research also indicates that there’s a link between mouth bacteria, and the development of other serious health issues. Use either your toothbrush or a tongue scraper to make sure you clean your tongue from front to back every day.
2. To pierce or not to pierce—Tongue piercings can cause nerve damage and also pose a risk of infection due to the high level of bacteria ever present in your mouth. It’s best for your overall oral health to avoid the practice. Yet, if you’ve decided to pursue an oral piercing, make sure to go to a reputable, experience artist, and keep yourself well informed of complications that can arise.
3. Don’t play games with your tongue—Some activities, including playing high impact sports can also result in serious injury and discomfort to your tongue. Wear a custom-made dental mouthguard to keep your tongue safe while you’re hard at play.
4. Straightening things out—If you’re experiencing jaw misalignment, you can end up biting your tongue, or the sides of your cheeks while speaking or eating. This can lead to a variety of issues including discomfort and canker sores. Modern dental services can help resolve this issue and even bring much needed pain relief from TMJ disorder.
5. Watch your tongue—Unfortunately, thousands of Americans are diagnosed with oral cancer every year, often only after it has advanced. To help screen for oral cancer, take the time every week or so to physically examine your whole mouth, including the tongue. Stick your tongue out and inspect it from all sides. If you notice any significant changes in color, or the development of sores or skin patches that seem to persist after even a couple weeks, contact us right away.
6. Get professional assistance—Our dental experts can perform high-tech screenings for oral cancer, discovering the disease before you’ve seen any physical indications. Early diagnosis permits treatment before the cancer has advanced more significantly. Therefore, visiting your dentist twice a year for a cleaning and thorough examination can actually save your life.
Sound oral health doesn’t just happen by chance, so keep your tongue in check by following these 6 essential steps. Also, stick out your tongue at bad oral health by sharing this important information with your friends.
Contact your Gurnee Dentist, Dr. Rule today to help you achieve the healthy teeth, gums, and tongue that will keep you smiling proudly for a long time.