5-Minute Crafts
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How to Clean the Back of Your Tongue

How to Clean the Back of Your Tongue

Cleaning your tongue regularly can help you get rid of bad breath, and prevent tooth decay and gum disease. So 5-Minute Crafts will show you how to keep your tongue healthy in the proper way.

❗ If you want to get consistent results, clean your tongue at least twice a day after brushing your teeth — in the morning after breakfast and in the evening.

❗ If you notice any unusual changes in your tongue (like it looks glossy, red, yellow, black, or hairy or develops white, red, or pink patches), you should visit a dentist.

Method 1: Use a toothbrush.

  • Stick your tongue as far out of your mouth as you can.
  • Take a soft-bristled toothbrush, wet it under running water, and place it on the midline at the back of your tongue.
  • Firmly stroke your tongue by moving the toothbrush to the tip of the tongue and back 5 times.
  • Spit out any excess saliva and debris that has accumulated on your tongue.
  • Clean the toothbrush by placing it under running water.
  • Then repeat the cleaning process on either side of the midline of your tongue.


✅ To avoid having your gag reflex kick in, hold the toothbrush perpendicular to your tongue. This way, you can control it better and it won’t slip too far back in your mouth.

✅ You can also try humming to distract yourself.

Method 2: Use a tongue scraper.

  • Stick your tongue out as far as you can.
  • Take a tongue scraper and place it on the far back of your tongue.
  • Press the scraper on your tongue and gently move it toward the tip.
  • Spit out the excess saliva and debris that have accumulated on your tongue.
  • Place the tongue scraper under running water to remove debris from it as well.
  • Then repeat the cleaning process 5 times, moving the scraper from the back of your tongue to its tip at different angles.
  • After the final scrape, thoroughly rinse the scraper with warm water and store it in a dry place. Rinse your mouth with water as well.


✅ To avoid gagging, find the center groove in your tongue and place the scraper at the part of your tongue where this groove ends. Don’t clean the bumpy mounds of tonsillar tissue that are located further back on your tongue.

⛔ Don’t press the scraper too hard to avoid cutting your tongue.

Method 3: Use mouthwash.

  • Take a bottle with a therapeutic mouthwash and pour some of it into the cup provided with the product. Use as much mouthwash as the instructions dictate (usually this is about 3-5 teaspoons).
  • Empty the cup into your mouth and swish it around for 30 seconds.
  • While you’re swishing the mouthwash, gargle it as well.
  • After you’ve finished, spit the mouthwash out into the sink.


⛔ Don’t dilute the solution with water if you don’t want to negate the effect.

⛔ Don’t swallow the mouthwash, as it is not meant to be ingested.


  • After you’ve cleaned your tongue, check it out in the mirror. If it looks black and hairy or white, it probably needs some more cleaning. If it’s fleshy pink — job well done!
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