Does Oil Pulling Cure Bad Breath?

If you're having problems dealing with bad breath, you may find that oil pulling helps freshen up your mouth and makes it smell better. How does oil pulling work on your breath and is it the best solution to use for halitosis problems?

Where Does Bad Breath Come From?

Bad breath may be a relatively temporary problem that is caused by your diet. For example, if you eat something that has a lot of onions in it, the onions may linger on your breath the next day. However, in some cases, bad breath can be a more permanent problem that comes from bacteria in your mouth.

For example, according to healthdirect Australia, bad breath is often caused by oral bacteria that naturally works to clean up your mouth. If you have bits of food stuck between your teeth or around your gums, your bacteria works on the food to try to get rid of it. During this process, the bacteria creates a gas that makes your breath smell. So, even if you've not eaten anything with a strong smell, you may end up with bad breath. In some cases, your breath may smell as a side effect of a more serious bacterial problem like gum disease.

How Does Oil Pulling Affect Bad Breath?

During an oil pulling session, you put a spoon of oil in your mouth and work it around for up to 20 minutes. The oil latches on to the bacteria in your mouth during this time, pulling the bacteria into the oil and keeping it there. The swishing movement you make with the oil doesn't just pick up surface bacteria but also has the suction to help pull stuff out from between your teeth, around your gums and from your tongue. Typically, the oil you eventually spit out is full of bacteria and toxins which, once taken out of the mouth, also remove the source of the smell.

How Effective Is Oil Pulling on Bad Breath?

According to the National Center of Biotechnology Information, research has shown that oil pulling can be just as effective as using a chlorhexidine mouthwash and, as such, can be viewed as an effective home remedy for bad breath.

While the cleansing process of oil pulling may help make your breath smell sweeter and may also help keep your teeth and gums in a good condition, you should also look at the underlying causes of your bad breath rather than just trying to fix the smell with oil pulling. You may be able to find a quicker way to get rid of halitosis.

For example, you may be more prone to getting bad breath if you don't clean and floss your teeth regularly. If you don't maintain good oral hygiene, food may be more likely to get stuck in your mouth making it smell bad. You may find that getting into a better daily tooth care regime helps keep bad breath at bay just as much as oil pulling.

If you brush and floss your teeth regularly and can't pin down your bad breath to food, your halitosis may be caused by a different problem such as gum disease. While oil pulling may get rid of the smell and may help keep your gums healthier, it may not be able to fix more serious underlying gum issues, which may get worse if left untreated. In this case, you should talk to your family dentist about your bad breath problems to get them checked out professionally.