Many of us come across the term ‘oil pulling’, on a daily basis through television ads. But, what is it? It is known as kavala graha or gandusha in Ayurveda. It is actually a procedure in this alternative system of medicine that is believed to have the efficiency in pulling out unwanted toxins or the ama. It is also known to improve immune system health and oral cavity health as well.
Gargling for oral care:
This technique is a gargling method suggested by Ayurveda for overall oral care. Gadhusha and kavala graha, even though these terms are used interchangeably, there are certain differences between the two. In the former case, the mouth should be completely filled with oil and then it is released after holding for some time. In the latter case, a comfortable amount of oil is retained in the mount for about three minutes and then the patient is asked to gargle the same.
These two techniques are performed, not just with oil, but warm water and herbal water are also used. For this technique, sesame oil, coconut oil and ghee are traditionally used by ayurveda specialists. This technique will help in saving the mouth from dryness, sore throat and even dental maladies can be avoided with this technique.
How to perform?
Ayurveda recommends that a gentle head massage is needed before actually oil pulling is done. Also, during the process the mouth should be kept in upward position and the liquid should not get into the throat during the process.
How long to hold the liquid in mouth?
Ayurveda recommends that the oil or herbal decoction should be kept in the mount until the saliva tends to fill the mount to the brim and mixes with the herbal decoction. Also, it should be held until there is water from nasal cavity and eyes and until the bitter taste of the decoction seems to exceed the saliva. Generally, this is recommended to be done for 3, 5 or 7 times.
Various liquids have different benefits:
Ayurvedic experts state that this procedure when performed with different liquids will bring different benefits. Here are some details in this regard:
• When it is done will sesame oil, it will be highly beneficial for improving the general health.
• When there is burning sensation in the mouth or tongue or in the oral cavity, it should be done with milk and ghee. This can bring a calming effect to the oral cavity.
• When there is pain in the oral line or sensitive teeth or other vata disorders, it should be done with a paste made by grinding sesame seeds.
• For healing and for cleansing the mouth, honey should be used for pulling.
• When there is distaste in the mouth or foul smell, ayurveda recommends kanji, which is a fermented drink for pulling.
This is a procedure that can bring a wide range of benefits and it is known to be highly beneficial for ensuring overall oral health.