Here at Butterfly Dental we've noticed a lot of posts on beauty and health blogs about oil pulling, with celebrities such as Gwyneth Paltrow advocating it as a method to improve the health and appearance of your teeth. So, what is it and what's all the hype about?
Oil pulling is an ancient Ayurvedic practice which supposedly helps keep the teeth clean and healthy, as well as providing other health benefits. It involves using an oil, usually coconut or vegetable, and 'swishing' it around your mouth, and practitioners recommend doing this for at least 10 minutes once a day. It is claimed that doing this can whiten teeth and heal tooth decay.
Unfortunately, tooth decay is irreversible and can only be removed and treated by a dental professional, and there is limited evidence supporting the other benefits that oil pulling is supposed to provide. However, the action of swishing the oil around the mouth, in conjunction with an effective brushing and flossing routine, can help reduce the build-up of bacteria and plaque, which is always a plus!
In conclusion, oil pulling is an interesting alternative therapy you can easily perform at home alongside your usual oral healthcare routine if you wish, but it's important to be aware of its limitations. It cannot replace routine dental visits and regular brushing and flossing, but if you fancy giving it a try, it certainly won't do you any harm!