For deep cleaning and whitening my teeth, I’ve found that the Ayurvedic remedy called “oil pulling” works better than going to the dentist.
An expert weighs in on how to do it…in-depth:
See also: The Science behind Oil Pulling.
I first discovered this process about seven years ago on the website for natural remedies called earthclinic.com. It requires only a tablespoon of sesame oil or coconut oil, so it’s easy enough to try. Since my first time, I’ve been blown away by how well it works–it whitens my teeth and draws phlegm from my body with dramatic effect.
Supposedly, oil pulling has other health benefits too–various websites claim that it doesn’t just whiten our teeth and draw out phlegm; it draws out toxins as well, leading to clearer skin, among other things. But I can’t vouch for anything other than what I’ve seen: whiter teeth, clearer lungs.
I’ve had many friends try it, and all but one have had wonderful, similar effects (the one friend didn’t notice much difference.) If you’re curious, here’s what I do:
- Brush your teeth and floss.
- Pour one tablespoon of sesame oil or coconut oil into your mouth.
- Swish the oil around in your mouth without swallowing it for 15-20 minutes, and pull the oil through your teeth as you swish. If your jaw muscles become sore while swishing, you’re working too hard. Relax your jaw. While swishing, the oil will become white and foamy. This is normal.
- After 15-20 minutes, spit the oil (now white foam) into the trash—the substance contains toxins and can clog the drain to it’s best to avoid the sink.
- Finally, rinse your mouth out 2-3 times with warm water, followed by some form of mouthwash. (Sometimes I brush my teeth again instead of using mouthwash.)
Here’s a video that explains the exact same process: