Can oil pulling make my mouth healthier and my teeth whiter?

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Dentist Melbourne
Melbourne's Home of Dentistry

What is oil pulling?

Oil PullingOil pulling is the practice of swishing a tablespoon of organic oil around in your mouth everyday, for between five and 20 minutes. You might have seen oil pulling promoted in magazines and blogs as a way to ‘cure’ everything from a hangover, to clearing up acne or even as a way to make teeth whiter and avoid cavities.

The name oil pulling comes from the process of the oil being ‘worked’ in the mouth by pulling, pushing and sucking it through the teeth.

It is thought that as oil moves around the mouth, microbes and bacteria hiding in gums and pores are sucked out of their hiding places. They are then picked up and drawn into the oil.

Where does it come from?

Oil pulling has roots in Ayurvedic medicine developed around 3000 to 5000 years ago.  According to the Journal of Ayurveda and Integrative Medicine, practitioners in India used this technique, as well as chewing sticks and herbal tree leaves to keep their mouths clean and healthy.

Does it work?

While the blogosphere would have you believe oil pulling is a revolutionary way to achieve whiter teeth, clearer skin or a generally fabulous life; the scientifically backed truth isn’t nearly as exciting.

According to a handful of published clinical trials, it may be a somewhat effective way to kill off some forms of mouth bacteria, including those associated with bad breath and gingivitis. However, there have been no clinical studies to prove oil pulling makes teeth whiter or can prevent cavities.

Can it replace my current dental routine?

If you think taking up oil pulling will reinvent your dental care routine –  you’ll just end up with a bad taste in your mouth. The simple answer is no. Dentists and hygienists do not recommend this method as a comprehensive dental routine or alternative to your current tooth brushing, flossing and regular visits to the dentist.

If you choose to try it…

Always speak to your dentist or dental hygienist before you add the practice of oil pulling to your daily routine.

Call the friendly reception team at Smile Solutions to book an appointment today on 9650 4920.

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