Everyone likes to look and feel their best, and a big part of that is a beautiful, healthy smile. While some people go to great lengths to have their teeth whitened, gums treated, and improve dental health; there are some straightforward everyday measures you can take to keep those pearly whites - well, white! A healthy mouth will help you feel confident, no matter what life throws at you.
1. Clean Your Tongue
According to the Cleveland Clinic, your tongue can carry harmful bacteria the same way teeth do, so cleaning it should be part of your daily dental hygiene routine. The tongue is a highly developed fleshy muscle that helps you do everything from eating to talking. Because the tongue comes in contact with so many substances and situations throughout the day, there is ample time for it to pick up bacteria. Bacterial buildup on the tongue can cause bad breath, tooth decay, gum disease, and more. Here are more details on the health of your tongue, and what you can do to improve it.
What Makes Tongues Dirty?
Your tongue has around 10,000 taste buds, all working to make it possible for you to taste your favorite foods like pizza, cake, sushi, ice cream, pasta, mozzarella sticks - you get it, food is good. With thousands of taste buds comes thousands of tiny valleys for bacteria to accumulate in. Every time you put something in your mouth, you expose it to bacteria both good and bad. This is a normal part of life, but while most people know to brush their teeth, few know they should be paying attention to their tongues as well.
Certain foods and environmental factors are more detrimental to tongue cleanliness than others. Some foods and activities to avoid if you want a squeaky clean tongue can include:
- Alcohol: Alcohol can increase the speed at which bacteria grows. Combined with the tendency for alcohol to cause dry mouth which increases foul smells, alcohol is one of the number one culprits for stinky breath.
- Canned Tuna:While all fish will become more pungent the longer it is exposed to air, being kept in a dark can will make this even more pronounced. Canned tuna may be the stinkiest fish you can eat, so maybe consider an alternative next time you reach for the can opener.
- Dairy Products: Dairy is full of amino acids, making them super good for your gut and body, but not so great for your breath. Your tongue has naturally occurring bacteria that happens to love amino acids, so these bacteria feed off dairy products and multiply, making your tongue stinky without proper care.
- Garlic:Garlic may be a staple in many dishes, but that doesn’t mean this delicious food can’t leave a bad taste in the mouth. Besides clinging to tongue tissue and leaving a lasting odor even hours after you eat, garlic is also absorbed into the bloodstream. As garlic is absorbed, the odor can be rereleased through your breath and mouth.
- Onions:Like garlic, onions are sulfuric and can be absorbed into the bloodstream. Just like garlic, onions will show up hours later, even if you have brushed your teeth or had several meals since.
- Smoking: Smoking is one of the number one contributors to bad breath. Smoking leaves carbon residue, chemicals, and drying particles on the tongue, all of which can cause bad smelling breath along with other health complications.
How to Clean Your Tongue
Cleaning your tongue is one of the best ways to eliminate bacteria that cause smelly breath. Since most people don’t know that they should already be cleaning their tongues, they improvise when it comes to dental health and wellness related to keeping the tongue clean. Most people use a regular toothbrush to clean their tongues, which only remove about 45% of the tongue sulfur compounds that cause bad breath.
To make your breath smell its best and keep that tongue squeaky clean, consider using a tongue cleaner. Tongue cleaners remove 75% of the sulfur compounds that cause bad breath, and significantly reduce production. The Wowe Tongue Cleaner has a curved flat edge, perfect for skimming over the surface of the tongue to remove bacteria buildup. Using a tongue cleaner is easy: simply use the flat edge daily to gently remove surface scum on the tongue. The Wowe Tongue Cleaner comes in stainless steel and pure copper, perfect for preventing bacteria from building up on the tool, safe for the environment, and reusable so you can stop bad breath every day.
2. Floss Your Teeth
Along with brushing, flossing your teeth is one of the most effective ways of maintaining a healthy smile. While brushing alone can do a lot to eliminate bacteria and buildup on the teeth and gums, flossing is essential for getting rid of every last bit of buildup in your mouth. Food and bacteria can be caught between the teeth and gums, and if left untreated can lead to tooth and gum disease. Flossing can also help maintain the appearance of your teeth. Dental health and beauty go hand in hand; flossing can help preserve whiteness, remove staining agents, and keep your smile looking radiant.
What’s Stuck in Your Teeth?
While food may be something we can all bond over, it doesn’t always bring us joy when it comes to our teeth. Certain foods are more prone to getting stuck between teeth and in gums and may cause more damage than others. Here are some foods that can wreak havoc between your pearly whites:
- Candy:All sugary candy, but sticky candy especially, can become lodged between teeth and cause bacteria to build and teeth to decay. Caramel, gumdrops, lollipops, gummy bears, and similar sticky treats have the highest tendency of staying in the teeth hours or days after being consumed. To avoid cavities, make sure to banish all sugary residue at the end of the day.
- Meat: Meat like steak or chicken can get stuck between teeth, often expanding as the strands absorb water and becoming increasingly difficult to remove with a standard toothbrush. While meat may not be as uncomfortable to have stuck between your teeth as harder or stickier foods, it can end up being the perfect place for bacteria to call home.
- Starchy Foods: This category includes things like potatoes and bread. Starchy foods like bread can easily get stuffed into the fine cracks between your teeth. These foods have high levels of sugars, making them the perfect thing for tooth-rotting bacteria to munch on.
- Popcorn: Everyone’s favorite movie theatre snack is also a usual suspect for clogged teeth. Popcorn kernels and particles can easily get stuck between teeth, or even lodged under the gums. These sometimes sharp pieces of popcorn can cause irritation, swelling, bacteria growth, and infection if left alone.
Flossing Can Help
To remove food and bacteria residue from between your teeth and gums you should use floss. Flossing gets to the places your regular toothbrush can’t, like between teeth, around ridges, and in the gum line. If you are not sure how to floss don’t worry, products like the Wowe Natural Biodegradable Silk Dental Floss make the job quick and easy. By simply wrapping the floss around your fingers and gently sliding it between your teeth, you can remove built-up food and bacteria between your teeth. The Wowe Natural Biodegradable Silk Dental Floss is the best option for the health of your smile, and the earth; this product is fully biodegradable and works wonders to keep your teeth clean and healthy.
3. Brush with Activated Charcoal
Activated charcoal has become increasingly popular over the past couple of years, heralded for its cleaning and antibacterial properties. Activated charcoal is charcoal that has been treated using high heat to make it more porous, free from toxic chemicals, and negatively charged to attract positively charged plaque and bacteria. Because of these unique properties, activated charcoal is the perfect ingredient for removing surface stains from your teeth and helping to stop bad breath.
Charcoal Infused Toothbrush Bristles
Rather than bothering with messy loose activated charcoal products that can be more mess than they are worth, try the Wowe Natural Bamboo Toothbrush with Charcoal Infused Bristles. Wowe’s eco-friendly and fully biodegradable toothbrush with charcoal infused bristles gives you all the benefits of charcoal for your smile without any of the mess or fuss. The charcoal infused bristles help remove surface stains, plaque, and bad breath creating bacteria for a cleaner, healthier smile. With its natural antibacterial and antifungal properties, activated charcoal helps remove and prevent bacteria buildup that causes tooth and gum decay.
Wowe cares about the environment as much as we care about the health of your smile. Every natural bamboo toothbrush is fully biodegradable, like our biodegradable silk dental floss. Using our products should give you peace of mind: your dental health and beauty are being taken care of, without the guilty feeling that you might be contributing to landfills already full of plastic toothbrushes. Whether you upcycle or dispose of your natural bamboo toothbrush from Wowe, the earth and your teeth will thank you.
Are you interested in adding natural, biodegradable, and earth-friendly products to your health, beauty, and wellness routine? Visit Wowe Lifestyle to learn more about our earth-friendly products and company!