What The "Eff" Is Oil Pulling?
I am prone to cavities. I swear, a curse was put on me; dooming me with one or two new ones each time I visit Dr. Dentist. And each time I leave him, he sends me off with a a bag of Listerine (that I, every single time, tell him will not be put to use), a complicatedly spikey new toothbrush, and a a pep talk on the importance of flossing. But I do floss, every single night (yes, I am one of those). I bush my babies twice a day, for two minutes in total, and alas, still get painful cavities.
When I began my transition into the world of health and wellness, I was increasingly interested in witchy wisdom ways. Anything and everything that my ancestors used to heal their ailments, I wanted a part of. There’s something so wonderfully ancient about it all.
Bring on, oil pulling. Also called Kavala Graha or Gandusha, oil pulling has been used for hundreds of years in hopes of cleansing the entire body (not just the mouth). The process is said to rid all kinds of nasty toxins from your system. Little are we aware, most of these toxins begin as bacteria in the mouth. The process of oil pulling involves swishing a tablespoon of plant oil in your mouth for around 20 minutes, and then spitting it out. Seems like simple fun right?
This kind is swishy fun helps to whiten teeth, prevent cavities (hallelujah over here), freshen breath, strengthen gums, and lessen jaw pain (aka TMJ). It's even been shown to help with insomnia and sinus issues, the alleviation of headaches, as a hangover cure, and for skin issues such as acne, rosacea, and eczema.
Down to give it a try?
Pick your oil: coconut tastes divine, sesame is equally as great, and when we can get our hands on it, we particularly love the pre-mixed with essential oils Ayurvedic Oil Pulling Rinse by Dale Audrey (in mint!). Take a tablespoon of your chosen oil, and swish it around in your mouth for 15-20 minutes. Remember, do not swallow it! You don’t want those toxins that are being pulled out of your body going deeper into your digestive track. Once your mouth muscles are good and sore, spit the oil in the trash can (the sink will get clogged). Then brush and floss, and you're good to go. Bacteria be gone.
They say it takes up to two weeks to notice a difference, and I can certainly attest to that. Give the swishing some time, and you’ll start to notice as well. I’ve been oil pulling for about 3 months now (not every day like I use to, but a couple times a week for sure). I went to see Dr. Dentist in May, and guess what friends… no cavities here. It’s a miracle!(?) No, its the oil.