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  • David Howell

Oil Pulling (Beats Teeth Pulling)

Ever heard of oil pulling to help keep your teeth & gums healthy?

Using a plant based oil, (coconut oil is currently popular, and sesame oil is often used), oil pulling involves placing an amount of the oil into your mouth, then swishing it around and dragging it back and forth between your teeth for 10 to 20 minutes daily. Those who use oil pulling rave about cleaner and whiter teeth, and less gum disease.

I always like to check out some background evidence for the many health fads I'm recommended, so here's some evidence about oil pulling, and it stacks up fairly well.

A group of 20 adolescent Indian lads with plaque induced gingivitis (gum disease) was selected for this small study, with half of the group given a Chlorhexidine solution as a mouth rinse for 10 days, and the other half given sesame oil for 10 days of oil pulling. Measurements were taken of the level of plaque, gingivitis and total count of aerobic microorganisms in the lads' mouth, both before and after the 10 day study.

Results showed a statistically significant reduction in all markers measured for both groups after the 10 day treatment program. The link to this small study is given below, but other studies support the effectiveness of oil pulling in maintaining a healthy mouth, including in reducing the level of halitosis (bad breath).

So how's it done?

(a) Place about a dessertspoon to tablespoon of the oil (I recommend unhydrogenated coconut oil) into the mouth

(b) begin swishing the oil in between the teeth and around the mouth, using a cheek filling and emptying motion

(c) Continue oil pulling for at least 10 minutes, and up to 20 minutes

(d) When finished, please don't spit the oil down the drain! Non-hydrogenated coconut oil is like a butter at room temperature, and it'll clog your drains when it cools down. Instead, place the oil into tissues and dispose in the bin, (or give it to your chooks if you wish)!

(e) Continue to do this daily (it's a great idea to take a photo of your teeth & gums every week so you can compare results and monitor your progress.

If your teeth are beyond maintenance and need actual repair, you probably need to see a Dentist. Being a Toowoomba Naturopath, I recommend a couple of great Dentists in Toowoomba;

Jonathan Loughlin

Michael Heasley

Here's a link to the article I've mentioned;

And, on the lighter side, while we're on the subject of teeth, here's an old joke;


...Who's there?


...Dishwasher who?


Happy smiling!

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