You may have seen a couple of blogs and Facebook posts about the latest new dental trend; oil pulling. You might be wondering what oil pulling is and how does it relate to dental health. Oil pulling is actually not a recent new trend it actually has been around for years. All you need to begin oil pulling is a tablespoon and some organic coconut oil.
If someone told you that you could swish your way to a healthier mouth with a tablespoon of oil for 20 minutes a day, would you give it a try? It seems like many actually are, but what exactly is oil pulling and what are clinical experts saying about its ability to provide actual oral and other health benefits?
Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic ritual, or a traditional Indian practice, used for detox and rejuvenation dating back 3,000 to 5,000 years. According to the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, oil pulling was used by practitioners in India to keep mouths clean and healthy.
Studies, such as this, have found possible oral health benefits from oil pulling and advocates of the practice say that benefits include whitening and strengthening teeth. Other potential benefits of oil pulling cited in reports include fresher breath and stronger gums, in addition to helping prevent cavities and gingivitis. Oil pulling is also said to help the body in a number of other ways including helping get rid of acne, eczema and other skin care issues, clearing our your sinuses or curing a hangover or migraine.
Despite the “rumored” benefits of the processes, the American Dental Association does not recommend oil pulling as a dental hygiene practice due to the lack of reliable scientific studies that show the practice’s oral health benefits. It should not be used as a substitution for regular brushing, flossing, and regular visits to your dentist. You should continue to brush and floss regularly and make routine visits to the dentist for professional cleanings and other preventive dental care procedures.
If you are truly interested in effective whitening effect, you may want to consider a professional in-office teeth whitening procedure or a simple do-it-your-self in-home teeth whitening product. These procedures and products are clinically tested and have proven to be safe and effective at whitening teeth.