I’ve always had a pretty sensitive gag reflex. Almost every morning in the process of brushing my teeth, flossing, and rinsing with mouthwash, one of the three causes me to gag. Even thinking about gagging or vomiting can cause me to gag. My friends sometimes mess with me by sticking their fingers in their mouths in a vomit-inducing gesture, which invariably causes me to gag.
Because of this, I’ve never been able to really scrape the top surface of my tongue, which I understand to be an important part of oral hygene. If I touch my tongue anywhere farther back than about an inch from the tip with anything, I gag. So I’m asking you dopers: is there some way for me to scrape the gunk off the back of my tongue without gagging? Also, what do you usually use to scrape your tongue, just your toothbrush?
Have you tried gargling with a mixture of salty water and coarse sand?
I think the way you are now, you’re just screwed But it’s possible to train yourself to suppress your gag reflex; it’s what sword swallowers do. Maybe if you stuck your fingers down your throat and wiggled them a couple of times each day you could gag less.
Wait…I never heard this. Is it true?
Bah, sorry, delete this post and the previous one for comitting an involuntary attempted thread hijack.
Someone posted here a while back that if you rub your temples for 30 seconds, it temporarily suppresses your gag reflex. Then others posted back in the thread saying it worked. Might be worth a shot.
I remember somebody telling me once that thay always had a problem gagging when they went to the dentist. The dentist told them to lift up one of their legs and it would somehow supress the gag reflex. I’ve never tried it, though, so I wouldn’t know if it works or not.
I guess you could just lay down and try it. Just make sure nobody walks in the room or they might think you’re nuts.
Smiling, if it is a Joker-style grin, suppresses the gag reflex. At least that’s what I heard, and it’s worked for me a few times.
I’m sending this link to my husband. He has the same issues, and produces some mighty interesting noises in the morning whilst brushing his teeth.
Yep. Most germs that cause bad breath come from one’s tongue-you’re supposed to either gently brush it with your tooth brush, or use a tongue scraper. Ask your dentist-I got one for free.
Am I the only incorrigible who opened this threat because it sounded like it had something to do with oral sex? I really need to wash my mind, it seems to be getting a bit dirty.
I thought that it would too.
My only suggestion is to try pushing yourself a little each day. My strategy (god, I hope none of the people whom I’m stalking read this) is to try brushing my tongue farther and farther back each day, and I can at this point, get pretty far.
As long as you can stand gagging, and don’t make yourself actually throw up, I don’t know that this would hurt you, but I’m certainly no doctor. I got a C in anatomy.
I use one of these.
For the gagging thing, just try to think of something else. Gagging while brushing was a huge problem for me while I was pregnant and it still sometimes, especially when I’m hungry, but you just kind of have to get over it. Concentrate on something else (I used a focal point, a spot on my mirror, for a while; you could think about what you need from the grocery store, or something) and it’ll get easier.
No assistance to offer, but this reminds me of a call-in guest Jonathan Brandemeier used to have on his show. She had such a sensitive gag reflex that she’d be gagging while talking on the phone. Her sense of smell was so acute that she could smell if someone had puked in a bar the night before. So he’d have her on the phone and about every 5th word she’d be gagging. I felt sorry for her, but it sure was funny!!
Hey, that was me!
Rub your temples for 10-15 seconds and your gag reflex should be suppressed for the time it takes to brush the back of your tounge. It’s what I do to get back there as I gag pretty badly when brushing my tounge too.
I also recommend a tounge scraper instead of your toothbrush. I had one for a while and it worked without making you gag.
Thanks for all the tips! I’m going to buy myself a tongue scraper and give it a shot.
Nope. I saw “gagging” + “TMI” and my immediate thought was “somebody’s partner wants fellatio to completion, and that somebody is having trouble delivering.”
When I switched to an electric toothbrush from manual, my gagging almost completely went away. I can get my tongue and palate and everything. If you’re already using an electric, I don’t know what to say.