What Is Oil Pulling On Teeth? Is Oil Pulling Safe? Your Questions Answered
What the heck is oil pulling? Well, I had that same question when woo woo hippie farm girl @fiddyshadesofgreen popped up on my TikTok for you page swishing her mouth with coconut oil. Why? What is oil pulling on teeth? This seemingly silly ritual actually has a lot of health benefits to it! Many swear by the practice and say they’ll never go back, while others may be just as lost as I was, and have way too many questions. Is oil pulling safe? What are the coconut oil pulling dangers? Luckily for you, I’m answering all the questions I originally had in this article. So, keep on reading and by the end of this, I’m sure you’ll be an oil pulling pro.
What is oil pulling on teeth?
According to TikToker @fiddyshadesofgreen, oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic practice that helps balance your mouth’s microbiome. Let’s break this down. So, you know how your gut has healthy bacteria that help you break down food? Well, that same kind of bacteria is in your mouth, well, specifically your saliva. When we brush our teeth and use mouthwash, we’re not only killing the bad bacteria, but we’re creating an environment where our good bacteria can’t thrive in. Oil pulling is meant to restore that balance, keeping your mouth fresh and clean, but also getting it ready to house all the good bacteria your mouth needs to stay healthy!
When should I do it?
Most sources suggest you should be oil pulling on an empty stomach. Oftentimes, people’s gag reflex gets triggered by this practice, so it’s probably safest to do this on an empty stomach anyway. When I first heard of oil pulling, I assumed it would be best to do it before brushing my teeth. Although, after conducting a little research, I found that it’s more effective to oil pull after you brush your teeth to restore your mouth’s microbiome effectively. What about the oil film that will cover your tongue, cheeks, and teeth? Those who oil pull regularly suggest gargling with salt water afterward to rinse the residue away.
Does it whiten my teeth?
There’s been some debate on this, even among dentists! This TikToker claims he notices a difference immediately after oil pulling. While I’m not sure your results will be that immediately noticeable, the consensus seems to be that most people who practice oil pulling on a daily basis notice their teeth whitening over time. Everyone’s teeth are different, and when you notice a difference (or if you notice a difference) isn’t guaranteed. So, if you’re just looking to find an inexpensive and natural way to whiten your teeth, oil pulling may disappoint you… Conversely, the ritual may also pleasantly surprise you with a brighter smile if you’re taking up oil pulling for your oral health.
Does it freshen my breath?
Yes! Dentists and oil-pulling advocates agree that this practice does help to eliminate bad breath. When we brush our teeth, we usually notice that our breath stays nice for a little while. But after some undistinguished period of time, that fresh breath goes away, and eventually, we’re often left with meh-smelling breath. Well, coconut oil pulling for 10 to 29 minutes in the morning has the potential to keep your breath smelling good all day! Why? Well, remember how coconut oil creates a good habitat for the healthy bacteria inside your mouth? This healthy bacteria shouldn’t smell. A sign of a clean, healthy mouth is fresh breath and that can be achieved with oil pulling.
What are the health benefits of oil pulling?
While the claims of benefits of oil pulling make up an astounding list, it seems the consensus is that the practice helps out your overall mouth health in many different ways. Oil pulling has been said to improve gum health, strengthen your teeth, and support your gastrointestinal health. When we think about our gastrointestinal system, it all starts with the mouth, so it makes sense how improving your mouth microbiome can sometimes trickle down to improving health in your stomach or elsewhere in your GI tract. Personally, I feel as though I can attest to how oil pulling can strengthen your teeth. I had already heard of and looked into oil pulling when I read about how a woman re-materialized decaying teeth with the practice. After oil pulling consistently, her cavities had shrunken substantially. Thinking I had a cavity myself, I decided to try out coconut oil pulling. When I went to the dentist a few months later, I had no cavities. While I’m not necessarily saying oil pulling will for sure help you re-materialize cavities in your teeth, I can attest to my tooth pain diminishing after starting the practice. With a whole array of problems that can occur in your mouth, I think oil pulling is worth trying out to see if it works for you.
Do you think you’ll give coconut oil pulling a try? Let us know in the comments!