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What Your Dentist Thinks About Oil Pulling

Does it help or harm your oral health?


Health fads come and go. Some of the them can be helpful, others harmful, and still others are just a waste of time and energy. If you aren’t a medical professional, it can be hard to tell the good health fads from the bad. And this can lead to you wasting time, money, and effort on strategies that aren’t worth it. Oil pulling has become quite popular in natural health circles, but as it turns out, this technique isn’t a good way to look after your oral health.

What is Oil Pulling?


Oil pulling is a practice that dates back 3,000 years and involves swishing and pulling a tablespoon of an ingestible oil around the mouth for around 20 minutes. Pulling is the practice of sucking the oil through the gaps between your teeth. People who practice this usually use oils like sesame, sunflower or coconut, with coconut being the most popular because it contains lauric acid, which helps to kill germs. The idea behind this practice is that the oil bonds with harmful substances in the mouth, drawing them out of the tissue. And at the end of the 20 minutes, the oil should be spat out, which is meant to remove the gathered toxins from the body.   

This sounds like an easy and useful strategy for removing toxins. And it’s been used for 3,000 years, so it must work, right? The truth is that oil pulling is only a small part of Ayurvedic medicine and was never relied on to treat illness. It was simply one small part of a complicated treatment plan. So, the idea that you can use this strategy to fix oral health issues is a dangerous one. If you have problems with your teeth, you need to see your dentist as soon as possible. This will prevent the problems getting worse while you waste time on techniques that don’t help.

Why do People Try Oil Pulling?


The benefits of oil pulling are unproved despite testing, but supporters still claim that it can benefit your oral health. Here are some of the benefits they claim you’ll experience when you take up oil pulling:  

  • Prevention or reversal of gum disease.

  • Improved teeth whiteness.

  • Reductions in the amount of tooth decay you experience.

  • A cure for your bad breath.

However, there is no scientific or medical evidence for any of these claims.

The Bad Side of Oil Pulling

There are a lot of stories out there about the health benefits of oil pulling, though there is very little evidence that any of it is true. However, there is a lot of evidence that suggests that oil pulling may be bad for your health and for your wallet in several ways. Some of the problems you may experience when you practice this technique are:

  • It can cause dry mouth, which will increase your chances of developing tooth decay and gum disease.

  • You may experience excessive thirst after having the oil in your mouth.

  • Moving the oil in your mouth for 20 minutes can cause overwork the jaw and cause muscular stiffness.

  • People who oil pull can lose taste or sensation in their mouth.

  • Spitting the oil into your sink may clog your pipes, which will lead to a costly visit from the plumber!


The Takeaway

At this stage, there’s no evidence of any health benefits to oil pulling, particularly when it comes to your oral health. And that means that it’s definitely not a substitute for seeing your dentist regularly for check-ups and deep cleans. Instead of wasting your time adopting this technique, it would be better if you improved your oral hygiene habits.

So, make sure you’re brushing twice a day for at least two minutes each time and floss once a day. According to all the evidence, and there’s a lot of it, this will have the biggest and best effect on the whiteness and brightness of your smile.


Paramount Dental Sydney Says

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If you’re concerned about your smile, then make an appointment with us here at Paramount Dental Sydney. Our caring and expert staff can help you find a dental treatment or solution that works for you.