What’s the Deal with Oil Pulling?

Social media has a way of turning something obscure into something widespread. This is a new and different way of life giving us access to all sorts of information we would have never known before! We’re also learning to be skeptics who don’t trust everything we read online, which is a good skill to have! Health news, in particular, has a way of making the rounds because we all want to improve our health whenever possible. One of the latest dental health trends floating around social media is oil pulling. Chances are pretty good that you know someone who is doing it, so we’ll give you the basics on this new fad.

Oil pulling is a centuries old practice that began in Asia. It was a folk tradition that people claimed would cure numerous ailments. Oral health was especially improved by oil pulling, with pullers claiming that they had less decay, fewer cavities, and whiter teeth. Fast forward to modern society where oil pullers are making the same claims! The practice is to take a tablespoon of edible oil (sunflower, coconut, olive, sesame, etc) and move it through your mouth. Using your tongue and cheeks, you would “pull” the oil through the spaces between your teeth to remove bacteria.

So, Does it Work?

As with all internet fads, you will find people who say oil pulling changed their life, and you’ll also find people saying it was a complete flop. We turn to the American Dental Association (ADA), who studies things like this. The ADA found no reliable research to support the claims of oil pullers. They recommend maintaining your regular oral hygiene routine of brushing twice a day, flossing once a day, and visiting the dentist once every six months.

Sometimes internet fads surprise us in their success, and oil pulling may still do the same, but for now, we recommend sticking with the ADA. Keep brushing, flossing, and getting regular cleanings! Contact us today to set up an appointment, and let us know what your experience with oil pulling has been! We’d love to hear it!