When I first heard the term “oil pulling”, I had no idea what it meant. Did it have something to do with oil rigs, the refinery that is nearby or an oil we would use in the kitchen? Yes…..that’s how much I DIDN’T know about this practice. Obviously I came home and googled and felt a little ashamed that I was so far off in my thinking.
After reading about it, it intrigued me but not enough to start oil pulling. I was glad I had the info but again, I kind of put that info off to the side and went on with my day/life. For those who have no idea what oil pulling is (….don’t feel bad, you read what I thought it was :-/) – here’s the general definition:
Oil pulling is the practice of swishing or holding oils from plants in the mouth for long periods of time to produce health benefits. (Oil Pulling: Benefits & Side Effects)
About 4 months ago, I decided to give oil pulling a try – there was no reason I decided to jump on the train so suddenly except that it’s always been in the back of my mind. From the different articles I found on the subject, this was my interpretation of it and how I started the practice of oil pulling. Here’s what I do:
- I take 1 tablespoon of unrefined, organic coconut oil (In cold weather, it’s solid) “bite” into it and let it melt…
- Swish for 20 minutes. I have read that is the suggested time as it allows enough time to break down bacteria and adhere to oil but not recommended to swish longer than 20 minutes.
- Spit out into trash can. (It will clog plumbing once it solidifies)
- Rinse with lukewarm water. I started rinsing with salt water and do like how my teeth feel after rinsing with salt but warm water is perfectly fine.
- Brush teeth. Some think they don’t need to brush after pulling but it’s something completely different in my opinion — I still brush using my homemade tooth paste.
At first, I found it to be extremely hard or I should say, inconvenient to do. I mean, I just can’t keep my mouth shut for that period of time! I tried to do while making dinner but then I always like to taste my food as I cook…..then tried it while washing my face and getting ready for bed but I kept “leaking” when I’d cleanse and/or apply my face cream & also I tried while I made breakfast but then I couldn’t have my morning chats with my hubby! SOOOO! I finally came up with this —> I started ‘swishing’ while I showered! I put my tablespoon in (and I worked up to this ….only because it was suggested in one article I read — I started with a teaspoon and worked up to a tablespoon within a couple of weeks) my mouth and bite it up if it’s solid until it becomes liquified – then get myself ready to shower….shower and swish, towel off and spit it out. You want to spit it out and not swallow. We all know coconut oil is good for us but swallowing after swishing out all the toxins isn’t ideal. I find that from beginning to end of getting ready to shower, showering and toweling off etc., it’s nearly the 20 minute recommended swishing time.
Oil pulling claims is to pull out toxins and bacteria in the mouth. It’s been known to help cure some illnesses and help with dental hygiene. Personally, I am not quite sure what it’s done for my health, per se BUT I can certainly tell a difference in my teeth! First of all, I’m a coffee drinker and the little stains between my teeth have lightened significantly! I didn’t even expect that to happen so that was a pleasant surprise. I had a few people as of late, ask if I got my teeth whitened too! Another plus was that I don’t notice the sensitivity I used to have with really cold drinks or hot drinks for that matter. A few months back, I noticed a small black dot on my molar, which I assumed was the beginning of a cavity but I don’t see it there anymore. Another thing I’ve noticed is that my teeth actually feel cleaner – I don’t see and/or feel any plaque which has always been something I had a hard time with behind my lower bottom teeth and now they are as smooth as can be! I haven’t been to the dentist since I started oil pulling but I’m anxious to see what she has to say when I go back in a couple of months.
For me, it has worked wonders so I will keep up this regime as it really is no bother. Here are a few articles on the subject that will enlighten you more on this “ancient remedy” 🙂 If you oil pull, please leave a comment to help me and others with tips and personal findings!