The self care practice of using a copper tongue scraper dates back thousands of years. In fact, the use of a copper tongue scraper to promote oral health has been practiced in Ayurvedic medicine today. Ayurveda is a health system that I have studied and provide therapeutics services in my business; Becoming You Lifestyle Management. I promote the use of using copper to support your overall health since copper is considered a metal that has antimicrobial properties. In this blog, I will discuss why you should use a copper tongue scraper, the wellness benefits and how this helps with your environmental footprint.
BRUSHING YOUR TEETH ISN’T ENOUGH
Growing up in a culturally driven household, I was taught as a child that brushing my teeth with a toothbrush and tooth paste wasn’t enough. My siblings and I were handed a toothbrush and was taught that brushing our tongue was the way to a clean mouth. We also used homemade mouth wash and did oil pulling with the use of coconut oil to ward off bacteria in our mouths. So growing up, I thought everyone did this until I met other people my age who seemed perplexed with the idea.
Most people assume that only people in India or have a background in Ayurveda oil pull or clean their tongue but that is far from the truth. There are many cultures who have always done this, but I see now that it is making a name for itself across the globe. Because of wellness publications such as Women’s Health Magazine and Men’s Health Magazine.
COPPER TONGUE SCRAPERS HAVE ANTIBACTERIAL PROPERTIES
A copper tongue scraper targets the bacteria that sits on your tongue even the ones you cannot see with the naked eye. When used correctly, the film that sits on your tongue is removed which helps in your overall health. You may have heard the saying that good health starts in your mouth. Your tongue is a vital key to your overall well being.
Tongue scraping prevents the growth and reproduction of bacteria. When this bacteria is not resolved, it can lead to disruption in the functions such as your heart and digestive system. When you remove the build up of bacteria on the tongue, you eliminate any bacteria that flows through the digestive track, eliminate odor in your mouth and even restore your taste buds.
WHY USE COPPER VS. PLASTIC SCRAPER
A copper tongue scraper is environmentally friendly. They are non-biodegradable which is why I prefer using this as opposed to the plastic ones in the market. Plastic ends up polluting the ecosystem and harming wildlife. Plastic takes a long time to decompose so using a brand that carries copper will significantly reduce your carbon footprint.
Most people who have adopted a more healthier and moral lifestyle opt to finds ways to do as much that are sustainable and environmentally friendly. Getting rid of plastic and choosing material that can be recycled like copper is one of them.
COPPER TONGUE SCRAPING INTO YOUR DAILY ROUTINE
Dinacharya is another word for Daily routine and this topic will be discussed in length in my e-book which can be found in the shop. Incorporating tongue scraping into your daily routine should not take too long. You can set a few minutes to do this right before oil pulling and brushing your teeth. And you should do this is in that order. Coined as another Ayurvedic practice, oil pulling involves swishing your mouth for at least ten minutes with coconut or sesame oil. You would do this as you wake and before eating. After oil pulling you will then floss making sure to focus on removing plaque build up. Plaque build up is one of the main causes of bad breath so paying close attention when doing this makes a huge difference as well. The last step would be to brush your teeth as you normally do. Make sure you rinse your mouth out thoroughly.
PROPER TECHNIQUE IN USING A COPPER TONGUE SCRAPER
You shouldn’t be intimidated or overthink how to use a copper tongue scraper. Although there is a proper way to do it, you just need to do in once and continue the process that I describe below:
1- There should be two ends to a tongue scraper. Hold both ends with each hand.
2- For the first time, look in the mirror as you open your mouth and stick out your tongue
3- While you grip the scraper, place the middle rounded edge on the back of your tongue.
4- Lightly drag the scraper forward toward the tip of your tongue.
5- Rinse the scraper and repeat a few more times.
Besides contacting me directly via my online contact form, your dentist is a good resource for also showing you how to how to use your scraper. The American Dental Association (ADA) is also a good resource to visit in locating a professional hygienist in your area.
CLEANING YOUR COPPER TONGUE SCRAPER
It’s important to remove all the reside from your copper tongue scraper. Thoroughly rinsing your scraper under warm water is a good practice. You can use your fingers to wipe over the scraper to remove any build up. Make sure your hands are clean.
You can use a mixture of water and vinegar to deep clean your scraper. Use a clean cloth to dry it thoroughly which will prevent oxidation or build up of bacteria. Having a designated cup or holder for your tongue scraper is a plus.
One of the questions I get asked consistently is, “When should I replace my scraper?’. My answer is replace it after a few months. My rule of thumb is every three months. You should also replace your scraper if you see that there is wear and tear on the surface.
WHERE CAN YOU FIND A COPPER TONGUE SCRAPER
I am happy to provide you with our copper tongue scraper that we stand by. I have sourced 100% copper tongue scrapers and have them available online in my shop. You can purchase these today and expect to receive them right to your doorstep. Each tongue scraper comes neatly packaged with clear instructions of its use. I have taken images of the exact ones I have. Keep in mind that the toothbrush is not included.
I’d like to hear your comments on your experience with tongue scraping. And if this daily routine is new to you, leave a comment below on what you’ve learned. Thank you for always stopping by to read up on my favorite topics.
Images ©Pauline Stephens
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