Oil Pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic practice which involves swishing sesame oil in the mouth to remove bacteria and debris, detoxifying the mouth and the body.  After 20 minutes of swishing, the sesame oil is spit out and the mouth is thoroughly rinsed with water.  Studies have shown proper oil pulling reduces plaque related gingivitis.

In recent years, organic cold-pressed coconut oil has been utilized as an alternative to the traditional sesame oil.  The lauric acid in coconut oil has proven anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects.  It has also been shown to reduce streptococcus mutans which are the bacteria primarily involved in causing tooth decay.

Oil Pulling Benefits

  • Decrease in plaque buildup
  • Decrease in calculus/tartar buildup
  • Decrease in external tooth stain
  • Decrease in tooth sensitivity
  • Decrease in tooth decay
  • Decrease in halitosis/bad breath
  • Whiter teeth

Oil Pulling is not recommended for individuals who have metal dental restorations.  This is because metal dental restorations (crowns, fillings) have the ability to corrode in the mouth.  Oil Pulling can pull corrosion by-products from the dental metals and may even pull mercury from dental amalgams.  The body may have difficulty processing the level of toxins released from the dental work and this can cause stress on the liver and immune system. The risks may outweigh the benefits in this case.

Oil Pulling Instructions:

  • Take 1 Tablespoon of cold pressed organic coconut oil/sesame oil/sunflower oil into the mouth and slowly swish , pulling it through the teeth.
  • After 20 minutes, spit oil into garbage can or other container (it can clog the drain). Do not swallow the oil, it contains bacteria and toxins.
  • Rinse mouth thoroughly.
  • Drink an 8 ounce glass of filtered water.

Oil can build up on the tooth surface with routine Oil Pulling.  This buildup prevents the teeth from absorbing important minerals.  Therefore, it is suggested to brush the teeth with baking soda and salt to remove the buildup.

Baking Soda/Salt Recipe

  • 3 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp Celtic/Himalayan sea salt
  • Water- just enough to make a paste
  • Brush 2 times a day for 2 days each week

**Oil Pulling is an adjunct to any oral health home care regimen.  Benefits are variable and it does not replace brushing and flossing. Please check with your general health care provider before beginning a new Oil Pulling regimen**

Resources:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25838632
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25584309
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21911944