Oil Pulling with Coconut Oil

Hi Dr. Ellie,

I’ve been on your system for approximately 6 months, and everything seems to be going pretty good (I have a Dentist appointment next month to see for sure). After reading a post on your blog regarding Coconut Oil (and how it helped a person’s gums), I had a question. Do you feel that Coconut oil has benefits if used for gently brushing (as was mentioned by someone on your blog)? I’m not thinking of replacing any of your system, this brushing would not be part of my usual routine (Closys, Crest, Listerine, ACT). I’m thinking just one or twice a week, in the afternoon.

In my research on the web regarding Coconut Oil, I came across a topic called “Oil Pulling.” I was wondering if you were familiar with this? Apparently, this is just swishing Coconut Oil around in your mouth for around 20 Minutes.

If either of these sound like they might have benefits, do you have any recommendation of when or how often I should do it?

If you don’t have an opinion on these, that’s OK, too. I just thought I’d bring it up to you, since I really trust your counsel on dental matters.

Thanks for your time, and I’ll let you know how my 6 month appointment goes!

TS

Hi TS,

I am familiar with Oil Pulling and have read quite a lot about it.

I think that coconut oil may work well to help “pull” harmful bacteria from periodontal pockets – and in this way it could be a home remedy to prevent gum disease getting worse.

I have tried coconut oil pulling myself but feel that a long routine on this product would be a time-consuming challenge!

( I prefer to trust Closys – which I believe works in a similar way – but works more gently and more quickly).

I do think that coconut oil helps get rid of staining and maybe helps loosen calculus deposits.

I am unsure and I worry that coconut oil may be too aggressive for regular use.

In the same way I believe that baking soda may work for a one-time use but should NOT to be used regularly, because it appears to work against the development of the healthy protein film you need for sustainable oral health.

What I found after using the coconut oil was that my teeth (which are usually very comfortable) were a bit “raw” and sensitive for a few days.

This is why I view it as a help – but use sparingly – and not too often.

I think you will find that my system does everything you need! Remember to disinfect your toothbrush regularly – very important and often forgotten!

Best wishes,

Ellie



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7 replies

  1. Hi Dr. Ellie!I'm glad to see you address this topic following the earlier discussion about using coconut oil to possibly remove staining. I did try that once – I'm about 5 months into using your system, so I'm sure you will understand the staining I'm talking about. I think the coconut oil might have helped a little, but there is still staining, especially between the teeth, more so on the tongue side than the cheek side. I didn't think it was worth risking further damage to the pellicle layer I've been working so hard to build up, so I have only tried it the one time.At the end of the month, I'm going in for my first hygiene appointment since starting your system and I was thinking I should decline the baking soda spray when it was offered. I think you are very clear in saying avoid all products containing baking soda, right? Having said that, if the high pressure baking soda spray used in the dental office would remove the staining and would just be a one time thing (followed by lots of effort to restore the pellicle) maybe it might not be such a bad thing? I'd love to hear your thoughts! thanks,M.

  2. I think that a good cleaning, to remove stains and leave your teeth looking great, is good for personal smile-confidence, and I am sure it will not undo your months of hard work.Go ahead and get a great cleaning and then back on the system again – eat some Zellies as you leave the office!Just promise me that you won't start using the free toothpaste they give you (Ha!)Thanks for your comment – please let me know how your visit goes!Best wishes,Ellie

  3. I also tried oil pulling before I found Dr Ellie. It made me want to gag. I could barely do it more than once a day. Dr Ellie's system is enjoyable and much better tasting!

  4. Hello Dr.Ellie, I appreciate the help and awareness you are creating about the oral health issues to different people in this blog. People can clear their doubts regarding the dental health issues they have. I often come across people asking questions related to dental health to unprofessional people which could be dangerous for their health. It is always good to clear the doubt with the professional people like this one in this blog.

  5. Thanks for your comment. Perhaps the most important message I can give to the world is that dental disease is preventable. I would also mention that there are amazingly simple solutions to many "incurable dental" problems and many dentists are truly surprised when they see theses outcome and total resolution. If you want to get your dentist to believe; go back and show them how you have cured your gum problems with my system, repaired your cavities without fillings, and improved your oral health with a selection of mouth rinses! This is fun and exciting stuff – isn't it?

  6. Regarding oil pulling: Ayurveda recommends this with sesame oil; I’ve tried this, olive oil and coconut oil.
    Question: Though I notice benefits, I am concerned about possible acidity of oils. I don’t believe pH of oil can be measured, but acidity is measured in terms of “free fatty acid”. One reference says good quality olive oil may have about 0.8% free fatty acid. I’ve tried measuring my salive pH about 5 minutes after spitting out sesame oil, and it seems ok. Do you think it would be ok to hold such oil in the mouth for 5-10 minutes, provided it’s thoroughly rinsed off afterwards? Thanks for you input…I enjoyed your book!

    • Years ago a dentist showed the effectiveness of using a paste made from baking soda and peroxide to cure ANUG ( an acute, necrotizing, ulcerative condition of the gums). The peroxide probably disrupted the anaerobic bacteria and the baking soda alkalized the tissues. I do not doubt the effectiveness of this treatment, but just because it worked in this extreme case does not mean everyone will improve their gum health by using baking soda and peroxide. In fact, we know that peroxide can change the protein structure of teeth, cause mercury to escape from silver fillings, and that baking soda may be too alkaline and protein-dissolving for gum health. The extrapolation of a good therapy for one serious disease state does not mean this is the ideal daily care for healthy teeth.
      I categorize oil pulling in the same way. This may be a great idea for someone with periodontal disease, with gum disease bacteria teeming in the pockets around their teeth, for someone with foul breath or a huge burden of infection. I am sure that oil pulling can be an enormous benefit in some circumstances, but this does not mean that a person with healthy teeth should do this procedure every day.

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