The What, How and Whys of Oil Pulling

The What, How and Whys of Oil Pulling

April 22, 2018

What is Oil Pulling?

Oil pulling is the practice of swishing a plant based oil around in your mouth for 15 to 20 minutes (for the best results). It has been used for thousands of years. It is used in ancient Ayurvedic medicine. It is a great method to assist you in detoxing.

In Ayurveda, oil pulling cleanses your whole system, as each part of the tongue is connected to a different organ, such as liver, kidneys, lungs, heart, stomach, colon, small intestines, spine, etc. It is similar to Traditional Chinese Medicine in regards to everything being connected.

How Do You Oil Pull?

Pick a plant base oil of your choice. We prefer to use coconut oil. Take a tablespoon and swish it in your mouth for 15 to 20 minutes. You can work up to this time because it can be hard to get use to in the beginning.

Absolutely do not swallow it because it can pull out toxins and you do not want to ingest that. You may also add a drop or two of an essential oil with your spoonful. 

When you are finished, spit it out in the trash, or into a paper towel/cup and then throw it away. It can eventually lead to a clogged sink so you need to be careful if you spit in the sink often. After you are done oil pulling make sure to brush your teeth. Your teeth and mouth will feel so fresh and clean!

Why Should You Oil Pull?

Now on to the reasons why you should oil pull because after all why do something without knowing the benefits. Here are some reasons why you should include oil pulling in your daily oral care routine...

1. Oil Pulling Reduces Tooth Decay

Oil Pulling is an effective way to precent tooth decay, according to research done by the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine. A study that analyzed holistic methods for oral health found that oil pulling is one of the most effective natural solutions for stopping and preventing tooth decay and tooth loss.

2. Oil Pulling Gets Rid Of Bad Breath

Halitosis, aka bad breath, is often caused by bacteria. Oil pulling improves overall oral health, including bad breath. A study evaluated the effectiveness of oil pulling with sesame oil for bad breath and compared it to conventional mouthwash.

There was a reduction on halitosis after two weeks, as evaluated by tongue scrapings and their breath odor. The conclusion was that it was very effective as chlorhexidine (an antibacterial used in most mouthwashes) with bad breath and bacteria associated with halitosis.

There was another study done as well a few years later supporting these findings. After three weeks the participants had a reduction of bad breath, plaque, gingivitis and bacteria levels.

3. Prevent Gingivitis

Gingivitis is a form of gum disease that causes inflammation of the gums. This study found that oil pulling (with sesame seed oil) is effective at reducing plaque. Plaque leads to gingivitis, so a reduction and preventing of plaque also prevents gingivitis. Participants in the study showed reduction of plaque after 10 days of consistent oil pulling. 

There was also a study showing the benefits of coconut oil for preventing gingivitis. After only seven days of oil pulling with coconut oil, researchers found both plaque and gingivitis symptoms decreased dramatically, and they continued to decrease for the full thirty days the study was conducted.

4. Reduced Teeth and Gum Sensitivity

Some of us experience sensitivity when eating or drinking something cold or hot. This sensitivity can be quite bothersome. A benefit of oil pulling is that it reduces and prevents sensitivity.

There hasn't been a specific study done on this, but sensitivity is known to decrease when your teeth are healthy and void of plaque, tooth decay, gingivitis and other oral health problems

Oil pulling overall prevents and stops tooth decay, gingivitis, plaque, and bad bacteria to thrive in your mouth, which leads to oral health and to a reduction or avoidance of tooth sensitivity.

5. Increased Immunity

Your mouth is the gateway to your body. Your mouth is your first line of defense against illness and disease in many incidences. Since your mouth and immunity are connected, having a good oral care routine is critical. Oil pulling is great at detoxing and helping your immune system. 

When you swish the oil in your mouth, it removes bad microbes from your body and preventing them from going down to your gut, which is where most of your immune system is. Make sure you do not swallow it because this defeats the purpose of getting rid of the toxins.

6. Whitens Teeth

Oil pulling removes plaque, which can lead to tooth discoloration. It is a great addition to your regular oral care routines in whitening your teeth. Make sure to also check out Sparkoal Beauty toothpaste and activated charcoal powder to whiten your teeth in a safe and effective way. 

7. A Safe Mouthwash

There has been a possible link between conventional mouthwashes and oral cancer. There was a study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, which looked at 924 neck and head cancer patients in Europe and 1,824 in Latin America. They found that using conventional alcohol-containing mouthwash twice a day was a significant risk factor for neck and head cancers.

8. Helps With Heart Health

Good oral health has been linked with a healthy heart. There is an increasing amount of research showing that inflammation in the mouth is linked to serious health problems such as increasing amount of research showing heart disease, diabetes, dementia, premature birth, and Rhuematoid arthritis.

Scientists have seen a connection between bad oral health and an increase in risk for heart disease. Poor oral health can also increase existing heart problems.

A study done in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine found that treating gum disease leads to better over health, less hospitalizations for people with certain health conditions and to lower healthcare costs.

Scientists looked at health and dental insurance records for around 339,000 people, all who had gum disease and another health condition (such as type 2 diabetes, cerebrovascular disease, cardiovascular disease, pregnancy or Rheumatoid arthritis).

Those that received at least one gum disease treatment had lower medical costs and less hospitalizations within four years of the treatment, compared to those who were not treated within the time frame. 


What Oil Is Best For Oil Pulling?

There are many oils out there and a few of them have been shown to be effective when used for oil pulling. Check out this post all about what oil you should choose.