Today’s Marcos Ortega DDS dental post looks at oil pulling, an alternative practice that has been generating a lot of buzz around San Diego. Oil pulling has been a part of Indian Ayurvedic medicine for thousands of years. It is the practice of swishing oil in the mouth for twenty minutes to benefit the teeth, gums, and overall health and well-being. The oils most commonly used are coconut oil, sesame oil, and sunflower oil.
Proponents claim that it detoxifies the mouth, cleans plaque, reduces inflammation, cures bad breath, whitens teeth, kills infection, and boosts the immune system. Some advocates even claim that it “cures” cavities and periodontal disease.
What does the American Dental Association say about oil pulling? Here is an excerpt from a May 2014 article:
“To date, scientific studies have not provided the necessary clinical evidence to demonstrate that oil pulling reduces the incidence of dental caries, whitens teeth or improves oral health and well-being. Based on the lack of currently available evidence, oil pulling is not recommended as a supplementary oral hygiene practice, and certainly not as a replacement for standard, time-tested oral health behaviors and modalities. The ADA recommends that patients follow a standard oral hygiene regimen that includes twice-daily toothbrushing with fluoride toothpaste and cleaning between teeth once a day with floss or another interdental cleaner, using ADA-Accepted products. Brushing with fluoride toothpaste and cleaning between teeth help prevent cavities and keep gums healthy.”1
Marcos Ortega DDS cautions patients not to replace brushing, flossing, and regular dental cleanings/exams with oil pulling.
At Marcos Ortega DDS, we provide top-quality dental care for every member of your family. We serve all of your preventative, restorative, and cosmetic dental needs including dental implants, sedation dentistry, dental crowns, teeth whitening, and restorative dentistry. Our comfortable, state-of-the-art office is located at 306 Walnut Ave, Ste 25 in San Diego.
Marcos Ortega DDS
306 Walnut Ave, Ste 25
San Diego, California 92103
1“The Practice of Oil Pulling,” American Dental Association, May 14, 2014, http://www.ada.org/en/science-research/science-in-the-news/the-practice-of-oil-pulling, accessed on June 19, 2014