Oil Pulling

Use coconut oil. While you can get the same bacteria-fighting benefits with sesame or sunflower oil, coconut oil has the added benefit of lauric acid, which is well-known for its anti-microbial agents making it more effective. Also, a recent study found that coconut oil may help prevent tooth decay.

Start with just 5 minutes a day. Twenty minutes of swishing is a long time, and while the longer you pull, the more bacteria you’ll remove, 5 or 10 minutes will still offer some benefit. Also, if your jaw starts aching a few minutes in, slow down. Don’t work too hard, a gentle swishing, pushing, and sucking the oil through the teeth is all that’s required.

Don’t swallow. If you find it hard not to, you likely have too much oil in your mouth! Spit it out and try again with a smaller amount. Also, don’t spit it down the sink, as the oil could clog your pipes. Just discard the used oil into the nearest trash can.

Don’t skip brushing and flossing. Oil pulling should never replace routine dental visits and traditional home oral care, it doesn’t reverse the effects of tooth decay, but it’s a great supplemental therapy.

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