Why You Should Ditch Mainstream Mouthwash for Oil Pulling

We’re all about condensing the mainstream products in our home, especially in our personal care and beauty routine.

And if we get to knock out multiple brand name items with one all-natural item and practice? You better believe we’re on it!

So when we discovered all the benefits that oil pulling had to offer, we couldn’t throw out all those mainstream dental health products fast enough, especially the mouthwash.

Here are a few reasons you’ll want to ditch it, too:

The Harmful Ingredients

You know the sensation you get when you think of eating something sour and you naturally pucker up? That’s what happens when we think of mouthwash except instead of a sour, puckering sensation, it’s more of a burning, cringing one.

Not good, and neither are the ingredients found in mouthwash, which can include formaldehyde, phenol, cresol, ethanol, sodium lauryl sulfate, saccharin, and benzalkonium chloride.

If you’re not familiar with those terms, they’re ingredients that make up disinfectants and preservatives, many of which aren’t safe for ingestion…that’s why there’s a warning label on all these mainstream mouthwashes.

Of course, we know you’re not ingesting mouthwash just in the same way we’re not ingesting our pulling oil, but the soft tissue of the mouth is extremely absorptive, which means those toxic ingredients are still entering your body.

When you’re oil pulling you don’t risk absorbing any toxic ingredients, only beneficial properties of the coconut and essential oils.

Mouthwash is Just a Mask

Mainstream mouthwash brands claim to aid bad breath, but the truth is they’re not great removing agents, they’re just a mask, and many mouthwashes make bad breath worse!

How so? Well, we’re so glad you asked, it all comes back to those harmful ingredients, specifically, alcohol (aka ethanol) and sodium lauryl sulfate.

Mouthwash brands have touted alcohol as the ingredient that kills germs, but the reality is, alcohol is a drying agent and the percentage of alcohol needed to truly kill the bacteria in your mouth isn’t safe for consumption.

Therefore, alcohol isn’t killing the bacteria, but it is drying your mouth out, which also perpetuates new bacteria growth leading to, you guessed it, continual bad breath.

Sodium lauryl sulfate is a common ingredient in mouthwash and is also the ingredient added to toothpaste to cause the foaming action when brushing, which doesn’t do anything to better clean your teeth, but that’s another tangent.

The reason sodium lauryl sulfate perpetuates bad breath is because it too dries out the mouth and it also causes microscopic damage to the lining of the oral cavity, which then serves as a breeding ground for the bacteria that causes bad breath.

More Benefits with Oil Pulling

When looking at the harmful ingredients and how mouthwash can make bad breath worse, it’s a no-brainer that it’s time to pour that junk down the drain.

However, just because mainstream mouthwash isn’t the proper product to be using for your oral health doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have a practice in place to help cleanse your mouth of harmful bacteria, which is exactly why we practice oil pulling.

Not only does the natural antibacterial properties of coconut oil help take care of killing and pulling out all the bacteria in your mouth that can contribute to halitosis, gum disease, and cavities, but it also helps strengthen your enamel, whiten your teeth, and pull out other toxins through the oral tissue.

And those are just the oral health benefits, oil pulling is also beneficial for a variety of other areas of your health, check out some of our other posts here and here, to learn more!