By now, we understand the importance of living a healthy life and maintaining a healthy body. Since our body is a complex system, we must understand that illnesses to one part of our body can negatively impact our entire body. Just a few weeks ago, we focused on the importance of maintaining optimal gut health. Today, we are shifting our focus to oral health.
Establishing good oral health is essential to our overall well-being; not only does it affect our social relationships, but it also impacts our general health. Harmful bacteria from the mouth and tongue can travel to other parts of the body and lead to disease and other undesirable conditions that can have disastrous effects on us. Of course, having a healthy diet and good eating habits (no refined sugars, no tobacco, etc.) are key to having a healthy mouth. However, it is also important to establish a holistic routine to aid in our oral health efforts.
We’ve compiled a list of our favorite holistic practices to ensure your mouth is just as healthy as the rest of your body. Let us know if there are any we forgot to mention!
1. Chewing Sticks
Chewing sticks are an ancient, yet extremely effective practice in oral health care. We prefer to use Neem Sticks. Neem Sticks and Neem Oil have very powerful healing and antibacterial properties for clearing up mouth infections. To properly use Neem Sticks, simply chew on the end of the stick and VERY carefully rub around your gums! Chewing sticks taste delicious and are ideal for those after-meal occasions when you can’t run home to freshen up!
2. Oil Pulling
Known as ‘Kavala’ in Ayurvedic medicine, oral pulling is the procedure in which toxins are literally "pulled" from your mouth and body by swishing special oil around in your mouth for about 20 minutes (think the all-natural Listerine). Oral pulling is used to treat gingivitis, bad breath, swollen gums, and even some systematic diseases, including migraines and diabetes. The best oils to use are sesame oil, sunflower oil, and coconut oil. Can't stand sitting there swishing around for 20 minutes? Don't worry! Try the Dale Audrey Oral Pulling Rinse, where you can still see benefits after only 30 seconds! Best of all, they have different flavors, so you don’t have to suffer while this detoxifying technique works its magic!
3. Massage your gums
If you suffer from sensitive gums, you know how painfully uncomfortable and irritating it can be. Using a gum massager very gently every night before brushing your teeth will help to increase circulation to your gums and help you prevent future gum disease.
4. Non-toxic toothpaste
We’ve all been using toothpaste for as long as we can remember. Personally, I can remember using Flinstones brand toothpaste twice-a-day without realizing it’s just as sugary as sucking on a lollipop and just as likely to cause you cavities. Unfortunately, not much has changed since then. Some of us still use traditional toothpaste without realizing they are packed with sugar, sodium lauryl sulfate, and triclosan. Next time you’re picking up toothpaste, go for one that gives you the antibacterial benefits without the extra amount of nasty chemicals that could damage your good bacteria.
The essential step in maintaining a clean mouth is physically removing all the leftover remains that get caught in between our teeth. Lack of flossing can directly lead to bad breath and cavities. When choosing floss, go for an option that doesn’t contaminate our earth by adding more plastic! Eco-Dent is a great option. It’s 100% vegan, and instead of bee wax, it’s made with all-natural essential oils.