Coconut oil is very beneficial to your dental and overall health. So, what exactly is inside coconut oil? Coconut oil contains about 50% lauric acid, a medium chain triglyceride that is not present in most foods. The antimicrobial lauric acid is what makes coconut oil so special.
Studies have shown that the oil pulling technique (swishing oil around your mouth) can help reduce harmful plaque and is as effective an antiseptic as chlorhexidine. (Just don’t swallow the coconut oil and rinse with water after.) Because of its antimicrobial and antifungal properties, oil pulling with coconut oil works best. It is also a more natural way of fighting off tooth decay than using topical antiseptics!
Now, let’s take a closer look at the oil-pulling trend and learn more about how coconut oil can help your dental health:
Prevents Gum Disease and Plaque
Over time, the buildup of dental plaque on your teeth and gums can turn into gingivitis. Oil pulling with coconut oil can help reduce dental plaque and in turn lower your risk of gum disease.
Kills Harmful Bacteria
The lauric acid found in coconut oil is what helps fight off harmful bacteria and viruses. This is awesome because the lauric acid helps get rid of streptococcus mutans and candida albicans, bacteria that cause tooth decay! Coconut oil can also rid of bacteria that cause yucky bad breath.
If you don’t like the texture, you can also make your own coconut oil toothpaste at home. Simply combine a half of cup of coconut oil, 2 tablespoons of baking soda, and about 15 drops of peppermint essential oil. Bye, bye bad breath and tooth decay! (It will give you a whiter smile, too!)
Of course, oil pulling and coconut oil are no substitute for conventional oral healthcare, and should be used in addition to your fluoride toothpaste. At Premier Dental Associates, your dental health is our number one priority. If you have any more questions about coconut oil, talk to us about it at your next dental visit! Book an appointment with us by calling 212-587-0202 or online.