Talking About the Tongue

A sumptuous buffet illustrates the wide variety of flavors that are recognized by the tongue.

In our last blog post, we discussed the importance of having a healthy tongue. Since we use it throughout the day to swallow, speak and chew, our tongue is a very important part of our oral health. Just why do the dentists at the Yuba City Dentistry Group believe your tongue deserves care just like your teeth and gums? Because it’s one of the hardest working parts of your body and you only get one!

Why Is the Tongue Health Important?

Here’s are just a couple of reasons why a healthy tongue is so important to our health and enjoyment of life:

Speech and the Tongue

It’s essentially impossible to speak without moving or using your tongue. Foreign language learners also know how hard it can be to train the tongue to make new sounds and words. Although a baby is born with the ability to make all the sounds of of any language, our “mother tongue” eventually dominates, and we essentially “forget” how to make unused sounds. The brain and tongue work together to create speech and our language ability has a lot to do with the tongue’s muscle memory. This explains why new language learners usually have an accent. Nevertheless, the tongue’s ability to adapt to multiple languages, especially if they are learned before the middle teens, is impressive.

The Tongue, Eating and Drinking

The tongue enable us to enjoy all sorts of drinks and food. Our nose and tongue work together to help us taste the flavors of sweet, sour, bitter, spicy and umami (the flavor of richness). Our ability to taste also protects us from eating dangerous or spoiled foods. Interestingly, if you stop up the nose the tongue’s tasting ability does not work nearly as well.

Due to its sensitivity, the tongue also alerts us to any potential problems in our mouth. If food has become stuck in your teeth, if a tooth is broken or chipped or if there are any abnormal growths, the tongue generally acts as the “eyes” inside your mouth, alerting you to these changes. Trust your tongue! If something doesn’t feel right in your mouth, make an appointment with one of our Yuba City dentists to get it checked out.

Keep your mouth and tongue healthy and problem-free with regular cleanings and exams every six months with the Yuba City Dentistry Group. The wellness of this vital and appreciated organ depends on it!

Yuba City Dentistry
ernst@gfxservices.com
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