i had been reading about the benefits of coconut oil. and found this thing called oil pulling. the basic gist of it is that you take a spoonful of coconut oil in your mouth swish and work it all around your mouth, through your teeth, over your gums, in and out, up and down, over and through for as long as you can - up to 10 minutes or more - then spit it in the garbage and rinse, rinse, rinse. then brush your teeth.
why do this? this article is a good overview and jumping off point. people said they felt better the first time they tried this. i did not believe those commenters. but i was feeling a little off, you know, the winter-time scratchy throat, just a little achy, some pressure in my sinuses sort of thing, and ben was really sick with a sinus thing going on, so i grabbed some coconut oil, spooned some into my mouth, hopped in the shower and proceded to pull the oil while i showered. and after a few minutes, my head began to feel more clear. at the end of my shower, i spit (into the garbage can), and rinsed my mouth a bunch, and felt, somehow, overall, just better. or maybe i just thought i did? so, i asked ben to try it. he was game, and while pulling his sinuses seriously opened up. he continued to oil pull twice a day for three days - and the same cold/flu thing that hung on to every one else for two weeks or more cleared up in three days for ben.
we are sold. i have found i can fend off any "yuck" that i feel i may be coming down with. i also noticed that after pulling, my mouth and teeth feel cleaner. maddie (my 9 year old) does every other day, and her teeth are noticeably whiter.
i believe that coconut oil is really good for our teeth. and then i got reading about toothpaste. and i don't believe that commercial toothpaste is good for our teeth. this blog post (though not the toothpaste recipe i settled on) explains very well why i don't want to use conventional toothpaste.
the first time i made our toothscrub, i melted my coconut oil, mixed in my other ingredients, and then let it reharden. we scooped the scrub out of the little jar with a little spoon and fought it onto our toothbrushes and worked with it until it was soft in our mouths. a little frustrating.
then, i read about the whipped body butter, and i thought, why not whipped toothscrub? well, why not.
so, here's what i put in my bowl:
1/2 cup room temperature virgin, expeller-pressed coconut oil
9 capsules (1 1/2 TBS) calcium-magnesium powder (for gentle abrasion and mineralization)
5 drops thyme essential oil (antibacterial, anti-fungal)
a LOT of drops of peppermint essential oil (flavor and antiseptic properties)
1 tsp honey (what?!?!?! yes. honey. to mask the salty, mineral taste and because it is antiseptic, antibacterial and antifungal.)
then i whipped it with my hand mixer.
i spooned my toothscrub back into my jar, and we spooned some onto our toothbrushes and brushed away! much better. (after reading this post, i'm done with my spoon. i just stick my clean little finger in my jar, and pop my toothscrub into my mouth.) we spit into the garbage can, so the oil can reharden there instead of in our drain pipe. i have also found that rinsing with warm water makes my toothbrush, my sink and even my mouth (now that i'm used to it) happier. (i'm still trying to convince my family of this.) i follow with a nice cool drink of water.
you don't get that really minty, zingy feeling like you do with a commercial toothpaste. but it didn't seem to bother any of us. my mouth feels cleaner longer, and i very rarely (in fact, i dont' remember that last time that i did) have bad breath any more.
we'll go to the dentist for our spring cleaning later this month, and see what our hygenist has to say about our teeth. (we've been using this toothscrub for over a month now.) and i'll report back to you all.