Oil pulling is a not a new concept. Reports indicate that oil pulling has existed for thousands of years; however, it has reached a mainstream audience only recently.
What is oil pulling? It’s a simple technique that involves swishing a specific type of oil for about fifteen to twenty minutes before spitting it out.
But what is this technique doing on a dental site? In addition to problems like eczema and arthritis, oil pulling is said to cure bad breath as well whitening your teeth.
Is oil pulling really that good and can it solve your dental problems? Let’s find out:
1. Oil Pulling Is Not a Substitute for Brushing or Flossing
Oil pulling does not mean you don’t have to brush or floss anymore. While oil pulling does have its benefits, it is not a substitute for brushing or flossing.
Plaque is a sticky film that accumulates on your teeth and needs to be removed manually. This can be done with the help of brushing and flossing. Oil pulling can also help remove plaque. Oil pulling reduces plaque’s ability to stick to teeth. Daily oil pulling can also help remove tooth stains.
Various studies have shown the effectiveness of using oil pulling to remove plaque. Although oil pulling can help reduce the presence of plague, it cannot completely remove it. Those who practice oil pulling will have to continue brushing and flossing regularly.
2. Oil Pulling Is Not for Everyone
Although oil pulling is a fairly easy technique, it’s not for everyone. Children should avoid oil pulling. There’s a risk of the oil entering the body and causing the child to become ill.
3. Choose Your Oil Carefully
Oil pulling requires the use of specific oils. This mainly includes sesame, sunflower or coconut oils as these oils have great benefits. Coconut oil is known for its anti-microbial agents. Also, coconut oil helps fight tooth decay. Dr. Ippisch of Advanced Dentistry in Santa Cruz, CA says, “coconut oil contains Vitamin E, which has antioxidant properties that help kill bacteria making it work like mouthwash.” Using the wrong types of oil can be harmful.
4. More Is Not Always Better
The recommended time to swish is around five to ten minutes, doing it for longer a period of time will not give you better results. Oil pulling for longer periods may cause your jaw to hurt. You’ll want to start with five minutes and work up to ten minutes.
5. Do Not Swallow the Oil
You must spit out the oil once you are done swishing, and then you can swish with water to make sure your mouth is clean and doesn’t feel odd. Make sure not to drink or swallow the oil as it may have negative effects on your health.
Make oil pulling a part of your dental routine; however, do not use oil pulling as a replacement for your regular oral hygiene routine. If you have sensitive teeth and gums, you should contact your dentist before you try oil pulling.