Oil pulling using coconut oil could be effective in decreasing plaque formation and plaque induced gingivitis.
Swishing your mouth out with coconut oil may be a more effective and safer alternative to chemical mouthwashes.
Coconut oil is a safe, natural, and inexpensive tool to improve your oral health. Coconut oil has antibacterial and anti-viral activity that makes it especially well suited for oral health.
The study titled, “Effect of coconut oil in plaque related gingivitis – a preliminary report“, and published in the Nigerian Medical Journal, researchers decided to test the hypothesis that the increasingly common practice of “oil pulling or oil swishing therapy” today, is as effective for maintaining oral health as has been believed for centuries.
Oil pulling, in fact, is a traditional therapy that stretches at least as far back as 1500 years ago, where it was mentioned in the early Ayurvedic text, the Charaka Samhita.
There are various hypotheses on the mechanisms by which oil pulling may act in decreasing the plaque and gingival index. In oil pulling, as the oil is swished in the mouth the mechanical shear forces exerted on the oil leads to its emulsification and the surface area of the oil is greatly increased. The oil film thus formed on the surface of the teeth and the gingiva can reduce plaque adhesion and bacterial co aggregation.
The study enrolled 60 subjects between 16-18 years of age with plaque induced gingivitis. No control was used, rather, “the study was designed to compare the baseline values and the post intervention values in a single group performing coconut oil pulling in addition to their oral hygiene routine.” The subjects were measured for plaque and gingival indices at baseline (day 0), and then on days 1, 7, 15, 30 after the oil pulling was started.
“The mean gingival index was 0.91 and the plaque index was 1.19 at baseline. In comparison to the baseline values both the gingival and the plaque indices substantially reduced during the period of assessment. There was a steady decline in both the plaque index and the gingival index values from day 7. The average gingival index score on day 30 was down to 0.401 (from .91) and the plaque index score was 0.385 (from 1.19)“
The results were found to be statistically significant, indicating that coconut oil is an effective treatment for reducing gingivitis symptoms and plaque build-up on the teeth.
As simple as it is, oil pulling has a very powerful detoxifying effect. Our mouths are the home to billions of bacteria, viruses, fungi and other parasites and their toxins. Candida and Streptococcus are common residents in our mouths. It is these types of germs and their toxic waste products that cause gum disease and tooth decay and contribute to many other health problems including arthritis and heart disease.
Our immune system is constantly fighting these troublemakers. If our immune system becomes overloaded or burdened by excessive stress, poor diet, environmental toxins and such, these organisms can spread throughout the body causing secondary infections and chronic inflammation, leading to any number of health problems.
Oil pulling is incredibly effective in brightening teeth, healing gums, preventing bad breath, quenching inflammation, and healing oral infections. It is also effective in treating many systemic conditions throughout the body.