This may be the first time you are hearing the term Oil Pulling. Oil Pulling in a nutshell: Swishing coconut oil (or the best quality oil you can find – think unrefined, cold-pressed, organic oils. Try sesame, sunflower or olive) to rinse and detoxify your mouth.
It does sound a little odd, but there are some legitimate studies out there backing up it’s use and showing that it may in fact help improve the whiteness of our teeth, aid in improving our smelly breath and improve our dental hygiene and oral health.
So how do we start and what do we do? Using around a tablespoon of Coconut oil (or any natural plant-based oil) swirl it around your mouth as if it were mouth wash for approximately 15-20 minutes. Pretty simple.
One of the most beneficial things about this is decreasing the number of harmful bacteria within your mouth. Bio-film is produced on our teeth from harmful bacteria – which is basically how our plaque is formed. It is normal to have a small amount of plaque, however, if we develop too much, we introduce ourselves to a lot of health issues such as yellow teeth, fowl breath, inflammation of the gums and gingivitis (infection of the gums and cavities.)
Oil Pulling works because the oil attracts the bacteria which then attaches itself to the oil during the pulling and then gets spit out. It would be safe to say that each time you do this, you eradicate a substantial amount of bacteria from your mouth.
The key in choosing an oil is to note that certain oils offer specific benefits to the body. It may benefit you to choose an oil based on your personal health needs. Coconut oil is particularly beneficial as it is also shown to have antimicrobial effects.
According to an Indian Journal of Health Streptococcus Mutans – among the greatest bacteria in the mouth and a strong influencer of plaque formation and tooth decay. A 2008 study showed that oil pulling showed an improvement in the amount of this particular bacteria within the mouths of 20 boys and in no longer than 14 days! Although cholrhexidine mouthwash may have been more effective, coconut oil is much nicer on the mouth, and cheaper!
The Indian Journal of Dental Research says that Gingivitis – an infection and irritation of the gums starts when our immune systems begins to fight the bacteria within our plaque. It was apparent that coconut oil and cholrhexidine are effective in reducing gingivitis.
If this isn’t enough to convince you – it can also reduce the smell of our breath. Our smelly breath, scientifically known as halitosis, can quite often be caused by chemicals and gases that the bacteria within our mouth produces. So it only makes sense for us to reduce this bacteria, thus reducing the smell of our breath.
So the time frame in which we can expect some results is around 10 days or more. With such a minimal cost and effort, Oil Pulling is definitely worth trying.