The Practice of Oil Pulling
“Oil Pulling” is a folk remedy derived from Indian and Asian cultures and has gained significant popularity recently. “Oil Pulling” is done by using a tablespoon of edible oil, (coconut, sesame oil being most common) and swishing with it anywhere from 5-30 minutes. This practice is said to decrease the amount of harmful bacteria, remove toxins and even cure bad breath, tooth pain and ulcers.
The ADA has officially reported that they do not recommend oil pulling as a replacement for routine dental care due to the lack of scientific evidence supporting the claims above. Studies have shown that swishing with oil is less effective at removing bacteria in the mouth than rinsing with chlorhexidine (an antibacterial mouth rinse). In fact, some negative side effects can arise like dry mouth, muscle fatigue and loss of taste or sensation. Oil pulling should not replace a healthy dental routine that should consist of of brushing at least twice a day with fluoride toothpaste, flossing at least once and if necessary, using an ADA approved mouth rinse.
For more information please visit Drs. Eric and Casey Burns, DDS /RP