Sure, it sounds like a form of torture, however Tongue scraping is an ancient Ayurvedic recommendation that is quite often overlooked and thought to be a waste of time. I could not disagree with this anymore. I have just started getting back into Tongue Scraping and I certainly do notice a difference.
It is something that I recommend people add into their daily practice as it’s fantastic for oral health and overall physical, mental and spiritual health. The oral cavity is the main gateway between your mind/body so it is very important to be aware and on top of your oral health.
As mentioned before, I am a strong believer in the benefits Tongue Scraping brings.
Any build up on the tongue when left untreated can lead to bad breath and may house a significant number of bacteria, hence, the importance of tongue scraping on a daily basis. This simple practice is a great way of removing Ama (toxins) from your physiology which can accumulate and block the mind and body. The build up of toxins can result in all sorts of negative side effects.
Also, by removing the coating (toxins/Ama) and stimulating the tongue this can help balance the dulling qualities of KAPHA DOSHA in your physiology.
What is Kapha Dosha?
Kapha refers to all structure and lubrication in the mind and body. It helps control weight, growth, lubrication for the joints and lungs, and the formation of all the seven tissues – nutritive fluids, blood, fat, muscles, bones, marrow and reproductive tissues.
I may have an unbalanced Kapha?
Tarpaka Kapha: Sinus congestion, poor sense of smell.
Bhodaka Kapha: Poor sense of taste, food cravings due to lack of fulfillment.
Kledaka Kapha: Impaired digestion, poor absorption.
Avalambaka Kapha: Lethargy, respiratory problems, lower back pain.
Shleshaka Kapha: Weight gain, oily skin, loose or painful joints.
In Chinese medicine an unbalanced Kapha is very similar to a Damp Spleen (Spleen Qi Deficiency). Symptoms include the following:
- Poor appetite
- Digestive issues
- Eating disorders
- Loose stools
- Undigested food in stool
- Dull stomach pain
- Easy sweating without exertion
- Gas and abdominal distension
- Dampness internally
- Diabetes and hypoglycemia
- Scallops on the edges of the tongue
- Craving sweets
- Tiredness or weakness
- Difficulty waking in the morning
- Weak muscles
- Uterine bleeding
- Varicose veins
- Dull achy pain in muscles
- Chronic bleeding
- Easy bruising
- Obsessive worry or “obsessing”
- Lack of empathy
You may also notice after a couple of days of tongue scraping that your sense of taste will improve which is always an enjoyable experience.
Always wondered why your GP gets you to poke your tongue out at him/her? This could be due to the fact that Western Medicine is also beginning to acknowledge coating on the tongue as a sign of poor health. When your diet or oral cavity is irritated or sluggish keratin can accumulate and when bacteria starts growing on this keratin layer it can lead to discoloration of the coating.
This coating is harmless however, it is a very important sign that show something is out of balance with your body and your physical and emotional well-being can be affected. (if you incorporate an Ayurvedic view)
Below is a picture of how you want your tongue to look.
What kind of Tongue Scraper should I use?
We’ve got you sorted here at Raw Blend! We stock the Dr Tung’s Tongue cleaner. Why do we think it’s the best tongue scraper? Because like good silverware it is made of Stainless Steel and the curved cleaning edge removes bacteria and soft plaque in seconds. We use stainless steel because it is impervious to bacteria and is more comfortable and gentle on the tongue than plastic. This is why people prefer eating with silverware than with plastic ware. You can purchase your very own Dr Tung’s Tongue Scraper here!
The correct way to Tongue Scrape
You should gently scrape from the back to the front for 8-12 strokes. You can rinse the scraper in between if you find there is a lot of residue accumulating. Try not to be too aggressive as this can sometimes cause the gag reflex. If this does occur begin more slightly forward on the tongue and gently scrape.
It is very important to make sure that you adopt Tongue Scraping into your daily routine. You will definitely notice a difference in the long run as your tongue is the mirror to all the organs in the body. Clarity of the mind will also increase as you are removing AMA/Toxins from your head.
So the next time someone talks to you about Tongue Scraping don’t dismiss the idea, try it before you negatively comment on it.