2.15.2011

Do It For Your Valentine

A couple weeks ago, I mentioned that I am an avid tongue scraper. Many of you have asked for more information.

My first introduction to tongue scrapers was about ten years ago when I was up in Rexburg for the summer, selling Living Scriptures. I had just made a couple hundred dollars in commission selling five sets of DVDs to a man, when he asked me to listen to his USANA presentation. I felt obligated to listen (and purchase) so I ordered the cheapest thing they sold, a tongue scraper.

My life has never been the same. (I have been a tongue brusher as long as I can remember, but tongue scraping takes cleaning your tongue to a whole new level.)


A year or so ago, I saw tongue scrapers for sale at Wal-mart in a variety of bright colors. Each of my kids received one in their stocking for Christmas. Within a week, Derrick's girlfriend was asking for one too.

Wikipedia describes tongue scrapers nicely:

A tongue cleaner (also called a tongue scraper or a tongue brush) is an oral hygiene device designed to clean the bacterial build-up, food debris, fungi, and dead cells from the surface of the tongue. The bacteria and fungi that grow on the tongue are related to many common oral care and general health problems. In addition, decaying bacteria produce volatile sulphur compounds on the rear of the tongue; these molecules account for 80 to 95 percent of all cases of halitosis (bad breath).

Tongue cleaning has been used since ancient times in India and China. Ayurveda, the practice of traditional Indian medicine, recommends tongue cleaning as part of one's daily hygiene regimen to remove the toxic debris, known as Ama.

Scientific studies have shown that tongue bacteria produce malodorous compounds and fatty acids, that may account for 80 to 95 percent of all cases of bad breath. The remaining 5-20 percent of cases originate in the stomach, from the tonsils, from decaying food stuck between the teeth, gum disease, tooth decay, or plaque accumulated on the teeth.

In addition, physicians have reevaluated the link between oral health and pathologies of the rest of the body. Many clinical studies concluded that oral bacteria are associated with a number of very serious systemic diseases: cardiovascular problems, pneumonia due to inhaling bacteria present in the mouth, premature birth, diabetes, osteoporosis of the jaw, and infertility in men.

Tongue cleaning improves the sense of taste (because of cleaning the taste buds) and also stimulates the secretion of digestive enzymes.


Orabrush, a Provo-based company recently launched a large YouTube campaign about getting rid of bad breath (and also features David Ackerman dressed up as a giant tongue.) They claim that their product is better than tongue scrapers (any they offer their first Orabrush free!)

After learning about the bacteria and fungus growing on your tongue, how can you not want to clean it?

Bonus: If you are an aggressive tooth-brusher, like me, properly cleaning your tongue will save your gums by helping you reduce the amount of time you spend brushing your teeth.

Double Bonus: My Valentine says I've never had bad breath. Ever.

4 comments:

Min said...

Nasty. Glad I didn't read this before lunch. I still think it rips your taste buds off.

By the way, did you know a man invented the tongue scraper and tried for 10 years to market it. Survey's showed that only 1% of the population was interested in such a thing. Then he made one YouTube video about it, sales went wild and in one year became a millionaire. True story.

The Killer Bunch said...

FYI there is a whole display now at Walmart dedicated to tongue scrapers. There's even a TV with it to show the YouTube video. They cost was just under $5. Guess what my family will be receiving in their Easter baskets.

Katie said...

Confession: I kinda really want one now...in every color. Guess I'll be hitting up Wal-Mart, and thinking of that creepy tongue costume while I'm at it...

Mrs B said...

On my way to Wal-Mart. Well, as soon as we get over the RSV I guess.