In Part One, (The Importance of Cellular Oxygen), of this newsletter on oxygen I said how I love seeing seemingly unrelated pieces of information coming together, helping to validate one another.

A few years ago a patient gave me a blurb about using sunflower oil as a mouth rinse to help treat periodontal disease. I tried this approach with some patients (who had a slide full of spirochetes), and achieved varying degrees of success.

I could not understand how this could work, but after my research on the essential fatty acids (as related in The Importance of Cellular Oxygen – Part One and The Importance of Cellular Oxygen – Part Two), I now believe that this will work primarily by increasing oxygen to the gingival tissues.

The bacteria that are associated with periodontal disease do not like oxygen.

 After switching my patients to using a proper high-quality oil, which is refrigerated and comes in a dark bottle to ensure freshness, I noticed that the results became even better. I also observed that the longer my patients swished with the oil, the better the outcome became.

This method is called “oil pulling”.

On the Internet one finds a host of claims that oil pulling will detoxify your body and help with various health problems like: sinusitis, allergies, fibromyalgia, and insomnia, etc. I have seen some sites where people testify to wonderful results after a few months of oil pulling.

I cannot say whether other health problems will improve, but it definitely is worth trying it for periodontal disease. Of course improving a periodontal condition can only positively impact your overall health. As a side benefit, most people commented that their teeth became whiter.

Directions for Oil Pulling:

Step One: Brush and floss your teeth. If you use an irrigating device, use this also prior to oil pulling.

Step Two: Place 1 tablespoon of oil into your mouth and begin to swish, suck and pull the oil for 10 to 15 minutes, then spit it out. Do this one to three times per day.

Initially, many people cannot swish for this long; do it as long as possible and try to increase the time each day. When you spit out the oil, it should be slightly white in color. If it is still yellow, it means you needed to swish longer. Some websites advocate using safflower oil or sesame oil. To me it makes the most sense to use an oil with a ratio of omega-6 to omega-3 of 4:1 or 2:1 (see Part One and Part Two ). Whatever oil is used, make sure it is organic, cold pressed, stored in a dark bottle, and kept refrigerated. Remember heat and light cause oil to go rancid.

I would ask a favor of those who try this – Please e-mail your results to me.

© 2009, Mark A. Breiner, DDS

The information presented is for educational purposes only. You should consult a qualified health practitioner for diagnosis and treatment. 

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