This is going to be very basic but the point is to get you thinking about your mouth and why it is so important to keep it healthy.

Mouth diagram


So if you look in the mirror and look inside your mouth you are going to see a black bit at the back, some pink bits and some white bits decorating the pink bits. When I say white, I should maybe say ivory slash yellowish.

The black hole at the back; that’s where the food goes. This step is pretty key and it’s the main point of your mouth. Your mouth is there to prepare your food to be swallowed. Once your food is prepared and swallowed, it becomes your fuel so that you can do everything from walking to watching the telly box. The pink and white bits in your mouth are all there to prepare whatever you put in it to go down that black chute. (I did warn you that this was basic.)

So then you have a big wobbly, wriggling pink bit which is called a tongue. Your tongue is there to help move the food around in the chewing process and then form a nice little lump of mush to then be swallowed. The tongue will partly help with chewing by working food against the roof of your mouth (palate) and moving it around your mouth. It’s covered in taste buds that help you taste (obviously). It is also there to help you make sounds when you speak. You will most likely do it without even realising but take a moment to think about what your tongue is doing when you speak. Make an ‘L’ sound. Can you feel how the tip of your tongue is lifting up to touch your palate? You do that with a few sounds. I’m doing it at the start of the ‘D’ sound. I’m not sure what I’m doing to make a ‘K’ but my tongue is doing something. Make an ’S’ sound and you will feel your tongue making a small space for air to squeeze through. It’s quite amazing what you are automatically doing with your mouth when you speak. Try making a few sounds and think about what your tongue is doing when you make that sound. Disclaimer: I will not be held responsible for you looking a bit silly if you are going to try this on the train in a packed carriage.

Sticking with the subject of speech, your lips also come in very handy when talking. Think about ‘M’ sounds and ‘B’ sounds. Your lips form the opening to your mouth. They help with the chewing process by holding all your tasty treats in. Chew with your mouth closed as you were always taught and you will hang onto 100% of that ginger nut biscuit. Forget the importance of your lips at your peril. The other important thing that your lips do is to move when you smile.

So that’s it. The lips are the gateway to your mouth. Your tongue is for tasting, swallowing and then down the hatch goes your food. Lips and tongue for speaking. You may not have realised what an important job your mouth does.

But what about your teeth?

Keep updated with the Online Dentist newslettersign up today

Recent Articles



| How to care for your mouth | No Comments
Smoking is one of the most harmful things that you can do to yourself. Smoking cigarettes is an addiction to the nicotine that they contain. It’s clearly not easy to...
Man holding mouthwash bottle


| How to care for your mouth | No Comments
In this article, we have included everything that you need to know about mouthwash. To be honest, there isn’t much you need to know. To give you a quick summary,...
Advice on the best electric toothbrush available in 2018

Best electric toothbrush in 2018

| How to care for your mouth, Featured | No Comments
Picking an electric toothbrush can be really tricky because there are so many different electric toothbrush brands and models. Oral B, Philips and Colgate are all big brands which claim...

Keep Updated with the online Dentist Newsletter

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Download PDF

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Book a Conultation

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.