What Is The Back Of The Toothbrush For?

While buying a new toothbrush, you might have noticed a difference in the brush head in different types of toothbrushes. That is, some brush heads have a plain back, where other brush heads have a rough, bumpy back.

Hence, why this happens and what is the back of the toothbrush used for? Let’s have the explanation.

Along with teeth, the tongue also needs proper cleaning to avoid various oral diseases. The back or rough side of the toothbrush head is designed to clean the tongue. It can also clean the palate and inner cheeks.

In this article, you will learn about the significance of the rough side of a brush head. Additionally, you will know the different parts of a toothbrush and causes of white tongue. So, keep reading till the end.

What Is The Back Of The Toothbrush For?
What Is The Back Of The Toothbrush For?

What are the parts of a toothbrush?

A manual toothbrush generally has three parts. However, modern manual toothbrushes have a few extra parts. Here are the parts of a manual toothbrush in brief. 

  • Handle. The handle of a toothbrush becomes narrower near the brush head. And this area is known as the neck.
  • Head or brush head.
  • Bristles.
  • Tongue cleaner. This is optional, not all toothbrushes have this feature.
  • Gum massager – Some toothbrushes have rubber figures around the edge of the brush head. They massage the gums while brushing and ensure healthy gum tissues.
Manual Toothbrush

Along with a handle, brush head, and bristles, the electric toothbrush has more parts. Its brush head is removable, and it requires changing every 2-3 months.

Moreover, it does not have a tongue cleaner at the rear side like a manual toothbrush. Other parts of an electric toothbrush are –

  • Built-in timer
  • Pressure sensor
  • Circuit board
  • Motor
  • Battery
  • Outer case
Electric Toothbrush

Why is the back of toothbrushes bumpy?

Because it is designed to clean dead cells, bacteria, germs, and food deposits from the tongue, palate, and inside of the cheeks. In addition, the bumpy back of the toothbrush cleans the mucous tissues of the mouth.

Can you use the back of your toothbrush to brush your tongue?

Actually you cannot ‘brush’ your tongue with the back of your toothbrush, rather you can scrap your tongue with it. To brush your tongue, you need to use the bristles.

  • Place the bumpy back of the toothbrush at the back of your tongue.
  • Move the scrapper at side-to-side and back-and-forth motions on the tongue multiple times.
  • Finally, rinse your mouth. Scrap your tongue while or after brushing your teeth.

To brush your tongue, put a little amount of toothpaste on the bristles. Start brushing your tongue in back-and-forth motions with a gentle but firm pressure. And rinse.

Can you use the back of your toothbrush to brush your tongue?

Why is my tongue so white?

Your tongue can turn white due to many reasons. Here is a list of the possible causes of white tongue.

  • Irregular or improper oral hygiene. This is the most common reason.
  • Excessive consumption of tobacco and/or alcohol.
  • Oral lichen planus. This inflammatory oral condition happens when you have a poor immunity system.
  • Deficiency of iron or vitamin B.
  • Untreated syphilis. Sometimes AIDS can be a cause too.
  • Long-term treatment of antibiotics.
  • Fever.
  • Diabetes.
  • Oral cancer. Undergoing treatment of other types of cancer can also cause white tongue.
  • Excessive formation of candida yeast inside the mouth.
  • Regrowth of the tongue skin. When it happens, parts of the upper layer of the tongue skin become red, while other parts turn white.
  • Sharp tooth edges or dentures.
  • Dehydration.
  • Dry mouth caused by cold.
  • High consumption of liquid, soft or mashed foods.
  • When you breathe through your mouth.


What should your tongue look like in the morning?

Before brushing, your tongue should look white. After brushing, your tongue should turn pink with a slightly whitish coating. The tiny bumps on the upper surface should be visible after brushing. Any discoloration or unnatural position of bumps will indicate oral diseases.

Should you brush your gums?

Of course you should. Brushing the gums is as essential as brushing the teeth. If not brushed, bacteria living on the gum line will invite gum diseases. 

How long should you brush your teeth?

In general, you should brush your teeth for 2 minutes with a manual toothbrush. However, to be honest, 2 minutes is not enough to clean teeth thoroughly. 5 minutes (maximum) of teeth brushing can remove most of the plaque or food build-up. But if the brush is electric, you better not brush your teeth for more than 2-3 minutes.

Can a toothbrush be too soft?

Yes, it can. An extra-soft bristled toothbrush is great for receding gums. However, too soft bristles are incompetent to scurb food deposits and plaque from teeth.

Why do my teeth feel rough even after brushing?

This happens when your teeth have plaque or tartar build-up. Plaque and tartar are the most common reasons behind gritty lower teeth, eroded enamel can be another cause. While proper brushing technique and habit are enough to get rid of plaque, tartar needs medical help to remove.


This is all about what is the back of the toothbrush for and the important part of it. 

Next time, whenever you buy a toothbrush, pick one with a rough back rather than a plain back. The reason is, if you brush your tongue with the latter type, it will cost extra toothpaste. 

But the one with tongue scraper does not require toothpaste and cleans the tongue easier. If the toothbrush with tongue cleaner contains antibacterial ingredients, you will get better hygiene.

Also, see do you use toothpaste with a sonic toothbrush

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