What is Oil Pulling?
Oil pulling or oil swishing is an ancient Ayurvedic mouth wash technique with extraordinary health benefits not only for oral hygiene but overall health as well.
The gist of it is, your mouth is a petri dish of bacteria. You can keep it under control with everyday routines such as brushing, flossing and tongue scraping, but harmful bacteria can sometimes grow out of control and enter your bloodstream through your teeth and their roots. It is believed that bacteria and inflammation in your mouth are closely connected to other health problems in the rest of your body.
How does it work?
While you're swishing and swirling the oil in and around your teeth and gums, the fatty membranes of disease-causing microorganisms and bacteria hiding in tiny corners and crevices in your mouth are attracted to the oil like a magnet and become part of the oil muck that you spit out. So be careful never to swallow this toxic sludge!
Not only does oil pulling help remove infectious germs, but if you're like me and HATE to floss, it also helps pull out stubborn food particles clinging on for dear life in between your teeth and gums. Gross I know. Spit that sh*t out.
So why is this important?
For one, your mouth not only feels a thousand times cleaner (and healthier) but other benefits include ::
whiter teeth, healthy gums, cleaner tongue (yes your tongue needs cleaning too!), fresher breath (hello boyfriend and garlic), less cavities and subsequent trips to the dentist for drilling (it's even said to help reverse minor infections), improved immune system and overall systematic health. And all of the above will save you a ton of cash you can use for things that matter most.. like shopping.
- Put 1-2 teaspoons of oil and swish it around your mouth and in between teeth as you would mouthwash.
- Start with 5 minutes, or however long you can swoosh, then work your way up to 15-20 minutes. I set the timer on my phone and do my hair or respond to emails to kill the time. It goes by surprisingly fast!
- When the time is up, spit the oil out being careful not to swallow any. It's recommended to spit out in a trash can or toilet to prevent the oil from hardening and clogging drains and pipes.
- Follow up by rinsing with water, salt water or an all-natural mouthwash like, Dr. Brite's Cleansing Mouth Rinse.
- Then brush teeth and tongue (or use a tongue scraper). Personally, I love Dr. Brite's ( white charcoal ! ) Mineral Toothpaste.
Here's a quick tutorial to demonstrate oil swishing in action ::
What you can expect ::
To be honest, when I first tried oil pulling, it really grossed me out. You're swishing warm sludge that thickens in your mouth for upwards of 5 minutes and when you finally spit it out it resembles.. fill in the blank. It also doesn't have a pleasant after taste. That is, until I started swishing with Cocokitty.
I first tried oil pulling a few years ago and after a couple times, I couldn't bring myself to try it again. It gave me a gag reflex. And if you've ever tried it, I'm sure you know what I'm talking about. Fast forward a few years and with the birth of Coockitty, here I am swishing and swooshing like it's my job. Why? You might wonder. The reason Cocokitty has changed my oil pulling experience is because it's infused with mouth happy, food-grade, pleasant tasting ingredients that freshen breath on top of oil pulling. Win Win!
Now while I swish, it's actually quite refreshing. And after I spit and rinse, my mouth feels insanely clean. But don't take my word for it, try for yourself!
One more thing, I heard oil pulling whitens teeth but never thought it could really whiten teeth. But after trying again recently and oil pulling only three times in a matter of a week, I had several people ask me if I whitened my teeth. I noticed my teeth seemed whiter, but really didn't believe it until others noticed too! And to confess, I drink copious amounts of red wine and coffee, so this was V exciting news! It's my belief that the oil swishing process lifts and kicks those stubborn stains that regular brushing can't touch.
Now I crave the extra clean mouth feeling after oil pulling and look forward to the same thing I used to dread. My wish for you is that if you give it a try, you enjoy it just as much!