Maintaining your oral hygiene is extremely important as you are communicating at work or home throughout the day. However, most of us are ignorant of what depletes our oral health and also, what makes our oral health better. Ayurveda has given the answers to how to maintain good oral health.
How Does Sugar Deplete Oral Health?
During our childhood days, we would often get a good scolding from our mother for eating too much chocolate and other sweet substances. Most kids love eating anything sweet, and they end up rotting their teeth or getting cavities.
Sugar is not a very welcoming substance when it comes to oral hygiene. It doesn’t matter if you are using natural and organic sugar; sugar itself provides food to bacteria like Streptococcus mutans, and then this bacteria secrete certain organic acids that break down the teeth’s enamel, resulting in poor oral hygiene. Sugar in the digestive system also weakens the immune system and discourages the growth of good bacteria. It is always recommended to eat some wholesome sugars from time to time, but you must get sugar out of your daily dietary routine.
A Good Diet and Prevention Of Cavities
A diet containing whole foods keeps our teeth healthy and helps us maintain optimal oral hygiene. Our oral health is the reflection of our digestive system, so healthy teeth means a healthy digestive system.
To prevent cavities that arise from bad dietary habits, include fresh vegetables and fruits in your diet. Instead of canned foods, it is recommended that you eat whole foods so that you maintain good oral health.
Ayurvedic Treatments To Maintain Good Oral Health
Oil pulling is a practice that helps reduce pathogenic bacteria in the mouth, like Streptococcus mutans. This helps in reducing the amount of plaque build-up and also, tooth decay. Oil pulling originated from the Ayurvedic medical practices and also, helps in reducing bad breath (halitosis).
1. Take coconut, olive, or sesame oil and coat your teeth with enough oil so that you can swish it around along with plenty of air in the mouth.
2. Swish it for 15 minutes and spit the oil out.
3. Rinse your mouth with warm water.
Gum massage is also a traditional Ayurvedic technique to keep your gums healthy and in turn, keep your teeth healthy as well.
1. Take coconut, sesame, or olive oil in a bowl.
2. Dip your index finger and put the oil in the gums.
3. Massage gently all over the gums for 5-7 minutes.
4. Spit the oil out and rinse your mouth with warm water.
Ayurvedic medicine has recommended the use of “chewing sticks” in the morning and after each meal for their medicinal and anticariogenic properties. These sticks need to be chewed on, and as they break, they coat the teeth and need to be swallowed as well. This means that this medication is taken topically as well as internally. The sticks are chosen for their acrid or bitter taste, or their astringent properties.
Chewing sticks are generally made of Neem (Azadiraxhta indica) and Licorice root (Glycyrrhiza glabra). Since it is not easy to find a young neem stem, you may use neem toothpicks, neem toothpastes, and also, neem datun (toothbrush). You can find long, flattened licorice roots to reduce plaque and promote an antibacterial effect and an anti-cavity action.
Ayurvedic Herbs: A Natural Substitute For Mouthwash
Amla or the Indian gooseberry (Phyllanthus emblica) has astringent properties and is one of the three components of Triphala, an Ayurvedic digestive healing tonic. It can easily be used to make an effective mouth rinse by using a decoction of 1 to 2 grams of amla. This decoction acts as an oral tonic for the teeth and gums. Amla also helps in healing and regenerating any connective tissue in the gums and teeth.
1. Aloe vera helps is reducing plaque and can be used as an effective mouthwash as well.
2. Bilberry and Hawthorn keep the gums strong by strengthening the tissue of the gums and by stabilizing collagen in them.