Dental Hypotheses (Jan 2017)

Oil pulling: A traditional method on the edge of evidence

  • H Mythri

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 8, no. 3
pp. 57 – 60


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Introduction: Oil pulling is an ancient, traditional folk remedy that has been practiced for centuries in India and southern Asia as a holistic Ayurvedic technique. The practice of oil pulling involves placing a tablespoon of an edible oil (e.g. sesame, olive, sunflower, coconut) inside the mouth, and swishing or “pulling” the oil through the teeth and oral cavity for anywhere from 1–5 minutes to up to 20 minutes or longer. Materials and Methods: Articles related to oil pulling were collected by using oil pulling as Keyword in Google and Medline. Out of the 21 related articles published till 2016, 6 articles with the proper study designs were used for analysis. Results: The studies were unreliable for many reasons, including the misinterpretation of results due to small sample size and improper study design. Conclusion: Though the promoters claim it as one of the best method to be as adjuvant to mechanical control methods, scientific evidences are lacking.