What’s Your Tongue Saying?


With February already here, Valentine’s day is just around the corner.  With that being said it seems like romance is on many people’s minds here in Baton Rouge, LA. What makes us say this? Because of the questions dental implant provider Dr. Barksdale, as well as the rest of his staff here at Barksdale dentistry, have been getting from our patients recently. Many of them have to do with how best to prevent bad breath. Our first answer is always the same.

“Have you looked at your tongue lately?”

When we give our patients this answer, many of them look back at us in shock. It seems that a great number of people are not aware of how big a role your tongue plays in the state of your oral health. Not only this, but just the appearance of your tongue alone can tell you quite a few things about what might be going on in other parts of your body as well.

With all the above information in mind, we have decided to post an article explain how you can prevent bad breath, and possibly learn a few other things about your body, by simply looking at your tongue. Let’s take a closer look.

Your Tongue Looks Fuzzy and Brownish/Black

First of all, having your tongue feel slightly fuzzy is normal. That fuzzy feeling is due to thousands of tiny, hair-like growths known as papilla. These papillae are the reason that your tongue feels rough and slightly fuzzy if you run it along your upper lip.

However, papillae are also the perfect hiding place for bacteria. They provide crevices and a rough surface for bacteria to stick to in an already near perfect environment for them. Think of your tongue as a warm, wet sponge for bacteria. The warm moist, state of your mouth provide bacteria with the perfect conditions under which they can thrive.

When your tongue appears brownish or any darker version of that color, that means there is way too many bacteria accumulating on it at the moment. It also means that your breath does not likely smell very good.

Luckily, the fix to this problem is an easy one. Simply brush the surface of your tongue twice a day after you are done brushing your teeth. Many people do not know that their tongues need to be cleaned as badly as their teeth do. In fact, 80 percent of the bacteria in your mouth is resting on your tongue. if you do not clean your tongue regularly, just like you do your teeth, then that bacteria sits there and accumulates. This may be the reason your breath seems to be bad again just a few minutes after you brush your teeth. You missed the majority of the bacteria if you did not clean your tongue.

So, in preparation for any kisses you might be giving this Valentine’s day, be sure to start brushing your tongue. if your breath does not improve within a day or so, make an appointment with your dentist. This may be a sign that something more serious is going on. However, it’s most likely just your tongue needing a brushing.

Until next time readers, keep smiling.

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