Holistic Dentistry Blog
How oil pulling can improve your oral health
Don’t be fooled into thinking oil pulling is some new fad that people have been trying out. The practice is actually over 3,000 years old. However, up until recently, it was simply a folk remedy. So what is oil pulling? Simply, it involves swishing a tablespoon of oil around in your mouth for 10-20 minutes a day. The oil will “pull” and absorb toxins out of your body and trap them in a solution which you will then spit out.
Does oil pulling work?
A 2008 study in the Journal of Indian Society of Pedodontics and Preventive Dentistry found that there was a reduction in mouth bacteria in the plaque and saliva samples of those who participated in the study.
A year later, the Indian Journal of Dental Research concluded that “oil pulling therapy showed a reduction in the plaque index, modified gingival scores, and total colony count of aerobic microorganisms in the plaque of adolescents with plaque-induced gingivitis.”
It sounds complicated but basically oil pulling is good for you.
The benefits of oil pulling
Studies show that oil pulling is hugely beneficial, not just for your oral, but also for your overall health. By removing toxins and bacteria from your teeth, gums and tongue, you are purifying your whole system.
Oil pulling is hailed for whitening teeth, preventing bad breath, strengthening teeth, gums and jaws, preventing gum disease and dryness of your mouth, lips and throat. It has also been used to remedy sore or clicking jaws.
Oil pulling is also said to help with a number of other problems like relieving headaches, supporting kidney function, reducing insomnia, relieving hangovers, easing asthma, bronchitis and even osteoarthritis and encouraging a general detoxification.
How do you oil pull?
You’re more likely to stick to an oil pulling routine if you enjoy the taste of the oil, so choose between cold pressed organic coconut, olive, sunflower or sesame oil. Sesame is considered to be the most effective for oil pulling, and coconut is renowned for its antibacterial properties.
Once you’ve chosen your oil, put about a tablespoon of oil in your mouth and swish it around. Make sure to let it touch every part of your mouth but be careful not to swallow it.
As the oil draws in saliva and toxins, it becomes frothy and your mouth feels full of liquid. If it gets too much for you to swish, spit a little bit out and continue. Don’t swallow the oil. It will have become toxin-dense, and the last thing you want to do is to ingest toxins back into your body.
When you’re finished, spit the oil into a bin and not into the sink as oil can solidify and block the pipes. The oil will yellow or darken in colour the more toxins are absorbed.
When should you oil pull?
Oil pulling is best done in the morning before you’ve eaten. Start your day with a large glass of water, then put the oil in your mouth. Anywhere from 10-20 minutes is advised for oil pulling.
While oil pulling has been practiced for thousands of years, little scientific research has been done on the outcomes. Anecdotally speaking, however, most people who have tried oil pulling for two to three weeks report a decrease in headaches, and improvements to their oral health.
At the very least, it makes an excellent mouthwash. Organic coconut oil, a popular oil choice for oil pullers because of its pleasant taste, contains vitamin E, which acts as an antioxidant. Its lauric acid and monolaurin gives it anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties. Coconut oil has a host of other great vitamins to encourage good health. Vitamin A is a natural immune booster, vitamin D strengthens teeth, and vitamin K is good for blood clotting.
Concerned about your oral health?
If you have any concerns about your oral health you can get in touch with us at 01 286 6394 to arrange an appointment.