Many of us forget to have the much-recommended routine dental check-up, and this results in the sudden onsets of several dental issues like toothache, tooth decay, and also gum diseases. This causes severe pain and discomfort. So, it is always essential for us to have a routine dental check-up and also take care of our oral health properly. Ayurvedic oral practices could be of great benefit if you do it regularly. Several Ayurvedic daily practices serve as curative and preventive measures for many kinds of oral health issues. In this article, we will talk about some of the best ways for taking care of oral health- the Ayurvedic way.
Taking Care Of Oral Health- The Ayurvedic Way
Ayurveda is a natural healing science that evolved in India 3000-5000 years ago. However, it is now practiced in several parts of the world as a form of complementary medicine.(1)
Brushing and flossing teeth twice a day is paramount to maintain proper oral hygiene. Ayurveda even believes in the importance of properly cleaning your teeth daily to keep them shiny and white. In ancient times, people used to brush their teeth by using twigs of specific plants, and this tradition is still practiced in many areas.
Research has shown that every kind of chewing sticks that has been described in ancient Ayurveda texts have great medicinal and anti-cariogenic properties.(2)
There is a huge difference between oral hygiene practiced by people using Ayurvedic methods and those people using the modern brushing method. It has been noticed that people using the Ayurvedic method of oral or dental care are less likely to suffer from problems of tooth decay. Let us find out some of the best ways of taking care of your oral health- the Ayurvedic way.
Chewing Sticks To Brush Teeth:
Ayurveda has recommended that chewing sticks in the morning and also after every meal could help in preventing diseases, Ayurveda insists on using herbal brushes, 9 inches long and the thickness of your little finger. These herbal sticks should be either “Kashaya” or astringent, ‘Katu” or Acrid, or Tikta” or bitter in taste. The method to use these sticks is to crush one end, chew it, and slowly eat it.(3)
In the ancient period, people used twigs or bitter plants for cleaning their teeth. The antimicrobial properties of these twigs with bitter taste helped in keeping their mouth healthy and germ-free. Twigs of Neem, Peepal, and mango trees are most commonly used for oral hygiene. Chewing of these sticks is believed to help in controlling plaque, and facilitate salivary secretion.
While chewing the sticks you can also use any of the herbal kinds of toothpaste that are made from herbal plants and that are chemical-free. Lots of herbal kinds of toothpastes are available now in the market.
As per science, you must brush your teeth properly at least twice in a day and for two minutes each time. Use gentle and short strokes for covering every nook and corner of your mouth while brushing. Make sure that you also clean in between the gaps of your teeth and move the herbal twigs in circular strokes for cleaning properly.
Herbal Tooth And Gum Rub:
A herbal tooth and gum rub is something that involves the rubbing of some selected spices and herbs. Certain spices act as an excellent enamel cleaner and they prevent and cure all sorts of teeth disorders.
Rock salt, garlic, guava, and mango leaves are used to clean the enamel. You can use any of these to clean your enamel. Grind these leaves and rub them on the teeth. You can also use a mixture of salt and oil for rubbing your teeth and gums. This practice strengthens your gums.
Swishing oil in the mouth is known as oil pulling. This practice of oil pulling aids in removing microorganisms from the teeth and gums. Oil pulling helps in alleviating mouth ulcers and it also exercises the muscles of your mouth and thus strengthens and tones them.
It is mentioned in the Ayurvedic text Charaka Samhita, where it is called as Kavala or Gandusha, and it is also claimed to cure around 30 systemic diseases like migraine, headache, asthma, diabetes, and many more. Oil pulling has been extensively used as a traditional Indian folk remedy since a long time for preventing tooth decay, bleeding gums, oral malodor, dryness of the throat, cracked lips, strengthening the teeth, jaw, and gums.(4,5)
You can do oil pulling by using oils like sesame oil or sunflower oil. The sesame plant of Pedaliaceae family is considered a wonderful gift of nature to mankind because of its nutritional qualities and also excellent health benefits. Sesame oil is known to be the queen of oilseed crops as it has got tremendous health effects.(6)
Ayurveda also recommends tongue scrapping or cleaning of the tongue immediately after brushing the teeth. The scrapping of the tongue completes the process of oral hygiene. This helps in removing the coating of dirt or any build-up from the tongue, which might result in a foul smell. Toxins and bacteria accumulate on your tongue, which causes bad breath. Cleaning your tongue removes these toxins and bacteria and promotes fresh breath. It also enhances the taste and digestive and oral health. Tongue scrapping makes your mouth feel fresh. You can use a tongue scraper for cleaning your tongue.
Herbal Rinsing Of Mouth:
In Ayurveda, Amla, or the well-known Rasayana herb is considered a general re-builder of our oral health. This herb works well as a mouth rinse as a decoction. You can take 1-2 grams per day orally in capsule form for having long-term benefits to gums and teeth.
You can also prepare an herbal mouth rinse using Triphala or Yashtimadhu. This decoction of Triphala serves as a wonderful mouth rinser and regular practice of herbal mouth rinsing helps in alleviating many oral issues, including mouth ulcers.
For preparing the decoction you need to boil the herb in water till the water gets reduced to half its amount and then let it cool. Then, rinse your mouth with it when it is lukewarm.
Taking care of your teeth, gums and overall mouth should be one of the most priority things. You can try out all these above mentioned Ayurvedic ways to take care of your oral health and attain the best of your teeth and gums and keep away from any sort of dental or oral problems.