Oral health is a very important aspect of our general health. Our mouths play an extremely important part to our overall wellbeing as they are the pathways to the inside of our bodies. Good oral hygiene and health is important to everyone, whether young or old. While this is worthwhile, it is also essential to incorporate other healthy options to ensure that our dental health is not compromised. One of those healthy options is the use of coconuts. Good oral health can be maintained using coconut oil. This oil has been around for many centuries and has been embraced because of their versatile uses. They are readily available and relatively cheap to acquire.
About Coconut Oil
Coconuts are well-known for their multiple uses ranging from edible products to cosmetics. They are consumed after extracting the coconut milk, which is then incorporated in the preparation of a vast number of dishes. Coconut oil is extracted after drying the coconut flesh, which is then used in frying foods, making of soaps as well as lotions and other tropical skin applications. Coconuts are a very nutritive food option as they are rich in fiber, essential vitamins and minerals.
The uses of Coconut oil
As a mouthwash
Coconut oil can be used as a mouthwash. This process is known as oil pulling. Oil pulling is a traditional Indian practice that aims to whiten teeth and make one’s breath fresher. In addition, oil pulling removes bacteria and promotes healthy gums and teeth. It is done simply by swishing a tablespoon of pure coconut oil in the mouth for a few minutes. The oil is passed around and in between the teeth. Afterwards, carefully spat out in the trash can or the toilet bowl as it can clog the sink.
This gargled oil should turn white and thin out. It has been proven that this oil activates enzymes and draws out toxins from the blood. The gargled oil should not be swallowed at all as it contains lots of germs and toxins. It works by detoxifying the oral cavity. This is because coconuts have very high levels of lauric acid.
It helps people with some conditions
This practice is especially beneficial to people who are unable to brush their teeth due to conditions such as mouth ulcers, extreme cases of asthma and coughing. The following are some of the benefits of oil pulling or teeth brushing with coconut oil.
Coconut oil eliminates bad breath
Bad breath, also known as halitosis, is caused by poor dental health habits and may be a sign of other health problems. Bad breath can also be worsened by eating certain types of foods other unhealthy lifestyle habits like smoking.It is associated with infections, gingivitis and overall poor oral hygiene A bad breath is annoying and embarrassing, whether emanating from your mouth or someone else. People with bad breaths try all sorts of remedies ranging from mouthwashes, regular brushing of teeth to chewing herbs like peppermint. If these options haven’t worked, an excellent remedy would be coconut oil. Oil pulling can work wonders to improve one’s breath, as this oil activates enzymes and draws out toxins from the blood.
Coconut oil for teeth whitening
Yellowing of teeth tends to happen gradually. Some yellow color may be inevitable due to certain foods and water mineral composition. While a little color on the teeth may be harmless and even undetectable without keen scrutiny. Very yellow teeth might however decrease one’s confidence. Coconut oil is a simple alternative to make your teeth look whiter. Lauric acid contained in the oil kills harmful bacteria inside dental plaque which causes teeth yellowing.
Coconut oil kills harmful bacteria inside your mouth
Harmful bacteria that live inside dental plaque can cause mouth hygiene problems. Brushing your teeth with coconut oil can significantly improve mouth hygiene. The alkalis in the saliva will react with the oil leading to saponification and formation of soap like substance which reduces the adhesion of plaque. Coconut oil has a high saponification value and is one of the most commonly used oil in making soaps. The soap-like mixture produced with coconut oil lathers well and cleanses the teeth. The lauric acid easily reacts with sodium hydroxide in saliva during oil pulling to form sodium laureate, the main constituent of soap which might be responsible for the cleansing action and decreased plaque accumulation.
Coconut oil heals gingivitis
Gingivitis is a common mouth disease that is characterized by inflammation of gums. If not taken care of, it may damage the tooth bone permanently. It has been proven in several researches that the practice of oil pulling can reduce gingivitis up to 60%.In oil pulling, when the oil is swished in the mouth the mechanical shear forces exerted on the oil leads to its emulsification and the surface area of the oil is greatly increased. The oil film thus formed on the surface of the teeth and the gingiva can reduce plaque adhesion and bacterial co aggregation.
Coconut oil helps prevent cavities
Cavities are permanently damaged spaces in the hard part of the teeth. They may most likely develop holes in the teeth that cause toothache. Also known tooth decay or caries, they are caused by a combination of factors, including presence of bacteria in the mouth, frequent of drinking sugary drinks and not cleaning your teeth well. Cavities are a relatively permanent nuisance as eventually one loses the affected tooth. Preventive measures to tooth decay like oil pulling is a very important practice that can ensure one maintains good oral hygiene.
Coconut inhibits tooth decay and loss
Coconut oil is a natural antibiotic that destroys the bacteria that cause tooth decay. The bacteria responsible for tooth decay are Streptococcus mutans and Lactobacillus which inhabit the human mouth. Researchers have discovered that after digestion, coconut oil inhibits most streptococcus bacteria from reproducing which produce teeth decaying acids. In addition, several studies suggest that coconut oil can reduce these bacteria as effectively as chlorhexidine, which is the active ingredient used in many mouth washes. For these reasons, coconut oil can help prevents tooth decay and loss.
Coconut oil is one of nature’s most wonderful products. I t can help out in so many ways with our health especially oral health that we should be encouraged to use it and improve our overall wellbeing. The fact that coconut oil can prevent or treat several varieties of common oral afflictions and oral illnesses serves only to strengthen the need to have some handy at all times. This practical guide to the benefits of coconut oil on oral health is therefore useful for many years to come.