Pulling off Oil Pulling

Oil PullingWhen it comes to fads and trends concerning dental health, you will surely hear the term oil-pulling. While this technique sounds relatively new, it’s actually an age-old practice that originated from India. The method is mentioned in Ayurveda, or a system of traditional medicine Indians use.

Many people live with harmful bacteria living in their mouth. Some of these germs usually cause infections and cases that may require oral surgery or any procedure if not treated immediately. This is another reason regular dental appointments are essential.

Oil pulling is a practice where you swish oil in your mouth for about 15-20 minutes. Some people are skeptic about it, but its practical benefits are widely documented and proven.


The primary benefit of oil pulling is that it does away with biofilms in the mouth, which are composed of harmful bacteria and similar microorganisms. Reducing these will aid in improving breath odor and decreasing the risk of having gingivitis and plaque. These benefits are attributed to the fact that single-celled microorganisms easily adhere with oil.

Which Oil?

You can use different types of oil in this practice. Some of the options are sesame, sunflower, and coconut oil. It’s mostly recommended to use coconut oil, as it has strong anti-bacterial agents, which render it more effective compared to others. Its taste is also more pleasant.

Other Tips

It’s usually recommended to swish for 20 minutes, but it may cause exhaustion and brief loss of taste. Five to ten minutes of it is enough. After spitting the oil, rinse with warm water and brush your teeth, tongue, and cheeks.

Don’t depend too much on oil pulling to eliminate bad breath or kill bacteria definitely. Brushing should still be at the top of your dental health checklist, as well as regular visits to the dentist. Oil pulling should only serve as a complementary practice.