The ancient Indian science of Ayurveda is enjoying new popularity, and one of its health practices and particularly has taken off: Oil pulling. Endorsed by celebrities including the Olsen twins, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Miranda Kerr, oil pulling is having a moment. But does it actually work and how do you do it? Our Tampa dentist have all the answers for you.
What is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling is a practice of swishing oil around in your mouth. It’s sort of like the Ayurvedic version of mouthwash. These days people generally use coconut oil or untoasted sesame oil.
In oil pulling, you pour oil into your mouth and then swish it about for several minutes. As the oil flows between your teeth and gums, it pulls bad bacteria off your teeth and coats your gums with natural moisture. The action of pulling oil in your mouth creates saliva, which naturally reduces bacteria.
After a few minutes, you’ll spit out the oil into the garbage can. It may seem easy to pour the oil down the drain, but we don’t recommend this as it can clog your drains.
Does Oil Pulling Work?
The jury is still out on whether oil pulling lives up all the claims of its super fans; however, the ancient practice does have some proven benefits. They include:
Reduced bad breath
There are many potential causes of bad breath, thus many potential treatments. Oil pulling has been shown to be as effective as certain types of mouthwash in controlling bad breath. The oil removes the bacteria that causes foul breath in the first place.
Lower chance of developing cavities
You may think cavities are always caused by consuming too much sugar, but they can also develop from bad bacteria in the mouth. Given that oil pulling decreases oral bacteria, it shouldn’t be surprising that an oil pulling routine may reduce your odds of developing cavities.
Improved gum health
Gum disease, including gingivitis, is a common oral health problem. While oil pulling on its own won’t treat gum disease, the practice can benefit overall gum health and keep gum disease from developing in the first place.
Swishing oil in the mouth removes bacteria and plaque, both of which contribute to gum disease. Oil pulling with oils that have a natural antibacterial quality, such as coconut oil, can reduce inflammation that is associated with gum disease.
Protect Your Teeth and Gums
If you are interested in natural methods to take care of your health, give oil pulling a try. It may seem strange the first few times you pour oil in your mouth, but many people get used to it and even come to enjoy the practice.
Don’t forget to visit our dentist to have your teeth cleaned, get cosmetic dentistry, whiten your teeth, or treat gum disease. Both natural methods like oil pulling and traditional dental care can work together to keep you healthy and well in all stages of life. Reserve your appointment online today.