The mouth is the gateway to the body. It’s full of germs that, left unchecked, can become harmful throughout the entire system. The best way to prevent the spread of these nasties is great oral health, but is brushing and flossing really enough? An easy, and natural way to ensure a healthy mouth is oil pulling with essential oils and coconut oil .
What are the benefits of oil pulling with essential oils?
Ayurvedic practitioners suggest oil pulling for good oral hygiene. As oil is swished through the mouth and around the teeth the fatty acids attract bacteria which get stuck then dissolved in the oil. This process eliminates millions of germs, bacteria, and fungi. (Yuck!)
Until a few months ago I’d never heard of “oil pulling”, and, quite frankly, when I did learn about it I was skeptical, but, always curious, I decided to give it a go…
The first time I tried it my jaw got really tired, (It’s a lot of work to swish for 20 minutes! I even considered counting it as my workout for the day.) but my teeth felt pretty clean. I still wondered if it was worth it…until I saw my teeth. Holy Cow! They were about a shade and a half whiter and looked like I’d just come from the dentist’s office. (Since that is one place I avoid like the plague I was super impressed.) I was so amazed, in fact, that I convinced my 14-year-old to try it also. Same results! ‘Man,’ I thought, ‘I’m going to do this every day.’ (Uh-huh. Like I can really spend 20 minutes without talking/yelling at the kids.)
Why do you have to do oil pulling on an empty stomach?
It’s most effective first thing in the morning before you eat or drink anything or brush your teeth. This is mostly because you may feel nauseous if you swish oil in your mouth after eating.
What is the best oil to use for oil pulling?
The typical suggestion is sesame or sunflower oil; however, because coconut oil has antimicrobial properties it can kill the germs even faster and more effectively.
How much coconut oil should I use?
There’s no set recipe for a good oil pull. If you use too much oil it’s easy to gag, and hard to keep it all in, but if you use too little it’s not as effective. (You need plenty of oil to catch the bacteria with.)
My suggestion is to start out with 2 teaspoons (about ½ a plastic medicine cup) liquid coconut oil . Don’t use the fractionated kind. (Using fractionated coconut oil will not perform the same as the full-fat variety. That’s because whole coconut oil contains Lauric Acid, which is found in the fatty chains. This acid is the “germ killer”.)
You can run the bottle under hot water to get it liquid enough to pour, or you can put the solid in your mouth. (It will dissolve very quickly. I promise.)
Can you use essential oils with oil pulling?
Add a couple of drops essential oil, (please only use a brand of oil that is pharmaceutical grade, such as doTERRA and find a blend you like).
- Peppermint essential oil helps wake you up
- I like the heat of cinnamon essential oil best
- Clove helps to clean the teeth and gums while promoting fresh breath, so it’s a good choice
- Orange essential oil and lemon essential oil taste good and are mild, so they are good to add into blends
- Melaleuca essential oil can be used alone or with peppermint and lemon for a refreshing mouth rinse and breath freshener
- On Guard Protecting Blend has a good mix of some of the single oils mentioned above, so it would be a good blend to try
How long do I have to swish?
Set your timer, and begin swishing. The timing here is a bit tricky. Any less than 10 minutes and the oil doesn’t have time to “pull” anything out, but any more than 30 minutes and the bacteria can be reabsorbed into your system. (No one wants that!) 15-20 minutes is perfect.
How many times a week should I do oil pulling?
It’s recommended that an oil pull is performed every day. There are lots of people who have set their schedule just right that they can get it done before they even jump into the shower in the morning. Personally, I’m not that organized (and 9 times out of 10 someone in my house needs to be talked to before my feet even hit the floor in the morning, which you should NOT try with oil in your mouth. It’s just really messy.). I believe that 2-4 times a week is just about perfect.
What do I do with the oil when I’m done?
Don’t swallow it. Spit the oil into the garbage can, (Oil down the drain can wreak havoc with your pipes or septic system. Waaaay too expensive to fix!) and rinse with warm water.
Do you have to brush your teeth after oil pulling?
I usually brush my teeth after, just to make sure I got it all. Voila՛.
How long before I see results?
Within 2 weeks you should notice not only whiter teeth but better oral health in general.
Let me know how it goes. Until then, happy health!