Oil pulling is very trendy these days, so it may surprise you to learn that it’s actually a technique used 3,000 years ago in the ancient tradition of Ayurvedic medicine. You may recognize it from Instagram and Facebook celebrities, many of whom have raved about the benefits of oil pulling.
What is oil pulling?
Oil pulling is swishing oils around your mouth for 15-20 minutes and then spitting them out. The most common oils used are sesame, sunflower or coconut oil. Many people claim that oil pulling can cure all sorts of ailments including arthritis, gum disease, halitosis, and eczema while whitening your teeth in the process. However, this isn’t necessarily the case.
The truth about oil pulling is that it is not as helpful as many people on the internet claim it is, but there can still be benefits.
Below are a few things you should know about oil pulling before trying it for yourself:
Oil pulling can’t replace your oral hygiene routine – Some say that swishing with certain oils can remove the bacteria from your teeth better than brushing, but this is not true. It may reduce the amount of plaque that builds up on your teeth, but it can’t get rid of the plaque that does. Brushing and flossing are still vital to your dental health.
Oil pulling can be used a mouthwash – Traditional mouthwash kills bacteria – including the good kind! A certain number of healthy bacteria is needed for your body to function. Because of this, oil pulling can be a good replacement for regular mouthwash. We recommend using coconut oil because it includes antioxidants and also has anti-bacterial properties.
Be sure to use the right oils – If you use the wrong kind of oils, oil pulling can cause harm to your health. Be sure to use organic, high-quality oils. Otherwise, you may be unknowingly allowing mercury, arsenic or lead into your body.
Oil pulling won’t cure disease – There is no evidence that supports any claims that oil pulling can help cure arthritis, asthma, diabetes, eczema or migraines. Don’t spend the time or the money on oils if you believe this will cure any problems you may have!
Here at SpringRock Dental, we want you to be informed about your health and about anything that may help. While oil pulling does have merit, it’s not the cure-all that it is sometimes made out to be. As long as you’re aware of how to safely practice oil pulling, there aren’t many downsides to the practice.
To make an appointment at our office, please contact SpringRock Dental here in Aurora, CO.