Derived from an ancient oral hygiene practice dating back more than 3,000 years ago, oil pulling is a safe, healthy and easy technique to rid your mouth of harmful bacteria.
What is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling originated in India under ayurvedic medicine as a detox for your body and is now practiced in alternative medicine. This method was supposed to balance your mind, body and spirit to help you stay healthy. Today, people mainly use oil pulling in place of mouthwash and for other health benefits, such as improving heart health and as a moisturizer.
How Does it Work?
There are different types of oils that can be used, such as sesame oil and sunflower oil, but coconut oil is the best to use for oil pulling. “This is because 50% of its fat has the antimicrobial (bacteria killing) component lauric acid in it” (2). Oil pulling works well since bacteria and other microorganisms are covered in sticky lipids (fat molecules) that cause them to attach to other fat cells when they come in contact with each other.
Why it’s Better Than Mouthwash
Combining the ancient healing practice of coconut oil pulling with our modern routine of dental hygiene will promote wellness for whoever uses it.
1. Coconut oil is healthier for your body.
Taken directly from the meat of the coconut its oil does not have any harmful chemicals or additives in it and is completely edible. Although, when looking for coconut oil to use make sure to get some without any impurities in it.
2. It can provide you with lasting health benefits.
Coconut oil can aid in digestion, help soothe an irritated throat, heal chapped or cracked lips, reduce inflammation and improve your immune system and heart health along with many other health benefits as well.
3. Gets rid of harmful bacteria without killing the good stuff.
The mouth is the gateway to the body where bacteria, viruses and other organisms can lurk undetected. Thanks to coconut oils fatty lipids it is able to pick up the bad bacteria without killing the helpful flora and fauna.
5 Steps to Oil Pulling
A much healthier and safer way to get rid of bacteria is through oil pulling. There are a few steps that you must complete to do oil pulling as demonstrated by Dr. Axe.
- Take out 1-2 tablespoons of coconut oil and swish it around in your mouth like you do with mouthwash. Remember to start swishing, typically in the morning, before you brush your teeth or eat.
- Swish the oil in your mouth for about 5-10 minutes for beginners and 15-20 minutes for experienced oil pullers.
- Spit the oil out, but don’t spit it into the sink, instead spit into a trashcan so you don’t clog up the sink.
- Now, you can brush your teeth and floss to get the oil off.
- Congrats, you’ve completed your first oil pulling!
1. The longer you swish the coconut oil in your mouth the more microorganisms it pulls out.
2. Don’t swallow the oil because it contains the bacteria that you’ve just pulled.
3. Dr. Axe recommends that you should pull for at least 3 to 4 times a week.
Do not use oil pulling to replace your regular dental visits or brushing and flossing. Oil pulling is only used in place of mouthwash as a healthier alternative. If you are an oil puller remember to tell your dentist so that they can better assess your dental health.
If you are in the area and would like to make an appointment with a dentist call us at 912-353-9533 or go to our website, Savannah Dental Centre, also, check out our Facebook @CohenDental to see what’s going on in our neck of the woods.
- Axe, D., DNM, DC, CNS. (2017, March 29). Coconut Oil Pulling Benefits and My How-to Guide. Retrieved June 12, 2017, from https://draxe.com/oil-pulling-coconut-oil/
- D. (2016, August 03). The Benefits of Oil Pulling to Your Oral Health. Retrieved June 12, 2017, from http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2016/08/03/oil-pulling-benefits.aspx
- Emery, J. T., DMD. (2014, March 21). How dental professionals can respond to ‘oil pulling’ patients. Retrieved June 12, 2017, from http://www.dentistryiq.com/articles/2014/03/how-dental-professionals-can-respond-to-oil-pulling-patients.html
- Shapiro, D., MD. (2017, February 22). Top 10 Coconut Oil Pulling Benefits. Retrieved June 12, 2017, from http://www.doctorshealthpress.com/general-health-articles/coconut-oil-pulling-benefits
- W. (n.d.). What Is Ayurveda? Retrieved June 08, 2017, from http://www.webmd.com/balance/guide/ayurvedic-treatments