Types of tongue scraper: choosing the best one for you

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Most of us do brushing, flossing, and mouthwash in our oral care routine to keep our mouths healthy. But when it comes to tongue cleaning, few of us put it into daily practice. Well, some of us try to do it with toothbrushes. But it’s not very pleasing, is it? So why not use a more proper tool, like a tongue scraper? This tool can create a huge difference in your oral hygiene routine, especially if you’re suffering from bad breath. And the best part about it is that there are various types of tongue scrapers out there in the market. So when choosing the best one based on your personal preferences, you have many options. Let’s help you choose the most suitable tongue-scraping tool for you.

What kind of tongue scraper is best?

The main cause of such complaints is the layer of bad bacteria that is coating your entire tongue. Whether you’re complaining about bad breath or the white coating of your tongue, a tongue cleaner is the best solution. According to studies, a proper tongue cleaning tool will get rid of almost 50% more tongue buildup of bacteria than your regular toothbrush. But what type of tongue scraper is best? There is no certainty about which is the best because you decide based on your personal preferences and characteristics. It’s okay to get confused as there are so many varieties on the market, be cool. We’ll clear things out for you a bit.

First, let’s examine the tongue scrapers in two ways, which will make your decision-making easier:

  • Different shapes of a tongue scraper
  • Tongue scrapers based on material

Different shapes of a tongue scraper

We all have different tongue sizes and shapes. That’s why you can find various types of tongue cleaner designs out there in the market. To find the most comfortable and suitable one, first, you should know what these different shapes are for. Then you can decide on which tongue cleaner you’ll buy. No worries! Everybody has a type… Introducing:

V-shaped tongue scraper

People choose v-shaped tongue scrapers because it’s functional to use. It comes with a long handle and a triangular head. This head allows you to have a clean tongue in one pass.. So you don’t damage your tongue or taste buds.

U-shaped tongue scraper

U-shaped tongue scrapers are the stars of the market. This shape is quite easy to use. Not to mention that it’s an affordable choice. They’re able to bend to fit on your tongue. And it’s the best when it comes to preventing coated tongue. The only thing you can pay attention to when purchasing this shape may be its size. Some people may find it difficult to fit the tool in their mouths when using this shape.

T-shaped tongue scraper

If you’re looking for a gentler alternative, t-shaped tongue scrapers are a good option. It is also a very suitable option for children, as it appeals to people with more limited dexterity than people who use other shapes with ease. Also if your gag reflex increases during the cleaning process, it helps reduce it. It’s like a win-win in every way.

Tongue scrapers based on material

Tongue scraper shapes have various variations and are preferred according to personal needs. Of course, this also applies to the materials of the tools. When you make a list of pros and cons, you can see which type of material is more compatible with you and your daily routine. You can make a pros and cons list, to decide which material is more suitable for you. So what are your options? Let’s check them out:

Plastic tongue scrapers

Everyone knows plastic is not very eco-friendly. Unfortunately, it is used in the production of most things, including tongue scrapers. Being cheap to produce makes it also wallet-friendly to the consumer. So, the use of plastic tongue scrapers is very common and they often come in multipacks. You can find most plastic products in multipacks in the market. That’s because most of them are disposable. They keep harmful bacteria on them and cannot be sterilized properly. Most disposable products mean unnecessary plastic to the environment. Apart from these environmental factors, it’ll take multiple passes to achieve a cleaner tongue with a plastic tool. It can be frustrating for some. So if these are important to you, you may want to consider using a different material than a plastic scraper.

Silicone tongue scrapers

Silicone ones are actually not much different from plastic ones. They are also disposable. The only good things are that they do not affect human health as badly as plastics and are eco-friendly. Try getting silicone instead of plastic on your next tongue scraper purchase if you’re looking for a disposable option.

Metal tongue scrapers

If you’re looking for a zero-waste tongue scraper, this one is for you. Metal tongue scrapers might not be as pocket-friendly as other types. But they’re definitely the winner in long-term use and convenience. Not only do they allow you to clean your tongue in a single pass, but they can also be sterilized. So you can use it again. 

There are stainless steel scrapers and copper tongue scrapers available in the market. Since copper is both antibacterial and antimicrobial, it may be better than other materials in terms of health. 

How to choose the best one for you

The tongue scraper market has quite a variety of products, as we mentioned earlier. We hope this provides you with some insight. But which type you choose is entirely up to your personal comfort. You can decide on the shape by examining your tongue’s width or you can decide on the material considering its price/performance or environmental factors.

Also, we can talk about common situations that affect people’s choices and tongue scrapers that can be recommended accordingly. For example, your biggest concern may be your sensitive gag reflex. To minimize your gag reflex, you can choose a wider scraper in shape. 

The best type of tongue scraper for children

Children can be sensitive when it comes to oral health. The adventure that starts with the curse of menthol toothpaste may not be too pleasant for them. That’s why you need to be a little more understanding. First of all, children under the age of 5 should not be using tongue scrapers. Once they’re over 5 and have learned to brush and floss properly, they can start learning to use it. However, since the oral anatomy of children is not the same as that of adults, parents should pay attention to the shape and material to choose. For example, smaller and narrow-angled products may be ideal for children.

Although the cons outweigh the pros, plastic or silicone tongue scrapers can be gentler for children’s sensitive tongues. Most tongue cleaners for kids are designed to be fun to encourage them. They have colorful handles and various pretty prints on them. Let the fun begin!


1. Pedrazzi V, Sato S, de Mattos M da GC, Lara EHG, Panzeri H. Tongue-Cleaning Methods: A Comparative Clinical Trial Employing a Toothbrush and a Tongue Scraper. Journal of Periodontology. 2004;75(7):1009-1012. doi:https://doi.org/10.1902/jop.2004.75.7.1009 Link

‌2. Quirynen M, Avontroodt P, Soers C, Zhao H, Pauwels M, van Steenberghe D. Impact of tongue cleansers on microbial load and taste. Journal of Clinical Periodontology. 2004;31(7):506-510. doi:https://doi.org/10.1111/j.0303-6979.2004.00507.x Link

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