Oil pulling is an increasingly popular practice in holistic dental health routines. Oil pulling is when you swish with oil, usually sesame or coconut oil, for about 20-30 minutes a day.
It’s a form of ancient holistic Ayurvedic medicine that dates back about 3000-5000 years ago. Nowadays, it’s becoming more and more popular in the natural medicine scene.
People who use oil pulling to complement their dental health routine say that it whitens their teeth and makes their gums feel healthier. Some people make the bold claim that it even heals cavities.
While the legitimacy of these claims aren’t exactly known, they do know that oil pulling can fight off viruses, because it works as an antimicrobial. Even though there isn’t a lot of evidence about the effects of oil pulling, adding it into your dental health routine won’t hurt your natural teeth.
If you oil pull or you’re thinking about oil pulling, then you should bear in mind that oil pulling shouldn’t serve as a replacement for brushing and flossing. It’s meant to work in tandem with your dental health routine, much like if you were rinsing with a fluoride rinse. However, oil pulling isn’t effective like fluoride rinse when it comes to hardening your tooth enamel.
You should also be weary of accidentally breathing the oil in. Since oil pulling has been brought into the limelight, there have been a few cases of lipid pneumonia. Lipid pneumonia happens when oil gets in your bronchial tubes.
Usually, this occurs in the elderly, children, or people with immune deficiencies. We’ve had a few people ask us recently about oil pulling’s effect on veneers and other dental work. If you want to start oil pulling to ward off gum disease, but you’re afraid it will harm your dental work then keep reading.
Will Oil Pulling Harm Veneers?
Oil is a form of fat. It’s a greasy liquid that can serve as human sustenance, lubrication, or even fuel. Oil is found in a lot of food, and it’s even used plain as dressings on salads.
Veneers are attached to your teeth with a permanent adhesive. The adhesive in veneers are meant to withstand pounds of bite pressure when you chew. With all of this being said, coconut oil won’t damage the cement used to glue your veneers down.
However, we recommend talking to us about your oil pulling experiences, before getting veneers. We can offer more effective ways to fight off gum disease, and we can help tailor your cosmetic treatment to your individual dental health regimen. If you’re looking into oil pulling for the sake of whitening your teeth, another thing to keep in mind is that oil pulling won’t whiten your veneers.
Does Oil Pulling Harm Fillings
Cavity fillings are usually made out of a metal amalgam or tooth-colored composite. With that being said, oil pulling won’t affect the structural integrity of your cavity filling. At the same time, fillings are susceptible to cracks, wear, and decay, and they should be checked every 6 months by your dentist.
If you’re filling is already in tatters, then excessive swishing with oil pulling might force it loose in your mouth. Like veneers, we recommend asking your dentist before oil pulling. If you have mercury fillings, and you’re worried about the mercury leeching into your system, then we recommend avoiding oil pulling.
Oil is a hydrophobic substance that can dislodge small particles in your teeth, like microbe and bit of loose fillings. Before oil pulling, your best bet is to map out why you want to start and talk to your dentist about whether it’s the right complementary treatment for your unique situation.