my (more) natural & sustainable oral care routine

As you probably already know, I am a strong advocate for being mindful of what I put  in my body and apply to my skin. Eating all natural foods and switching to an all natural skin and beauty routine is a no-brainer. But oral care seems like a whole other ball game. Let me just preface this article with this- I am not encouraging you to forgo any modern oral and dental care practices. Going in for regular cleanings, brushing, and flossing are still a priority to me. I did want to share with you, however, some recent switches I've made to more natural and sustainable products involved in my daily oral care rituals.


toothpaste

I've recently made the switch to Tom's of Maine toothpaste. They have products with or without fluoride, as well as for sensitive teeth and much more. In my recent visit to the dentist office, my dentists asked to what toothpaste I used. I have to admit, I was a little reluctant to share that I was using Tom's because I was afraid that he might poo-poo my choice. However, his reaction was completely opposite! He agreed that toothpaste like Colgate or Crest had a lot of added/unnecessary chemicals. I should mention that he did mention that Tom's is ineffective for some as it is missing a certain chemical that fights a bacteria that causes tooth and gum sensitivity. I would encourage you to consult with your dentist to find a more natural toothpaste alternative that works for you!


toothbrushes

If you follow me on instagram you may have seen me talking about my new bamboo toothbrush made by The Green Root. These toothbrushes are 100% biodegradable. Switching to bamboo is an easy way to reduce your waste consumption. There are about 5 million plastic toothbrushes produced worldwide, these will never biodegrade and will end up in our landfills and pollute our oceans. The Green Root's toothbrushes are made out of 100% real biodegradable bamboo, features BPA-free bristles, and plastic free compostable packing. Once your toothbrush has worn out, you can compost it- can't get much better than that!

Check out The Green Root's website and instagram page to learn more!


oil pulling

Again, I want to emphasize that I am not advocating for the abandonment of modern oral care practices here. If you haven't heard about oil pulling yet, let me first give you a little background. It is an ancient Ayurvedic folk practice from about 3,000 to 5,000 years ago. Advocates claim swishing any type of oil in your mouth every day will whiten your teeth, reduce bacteria, strengthen your gums and jaw, clear your sinuses, prevent ad breath, and more. 

Currently, there is very limited scientific evidence that backs these claims, while there is some evidence that it helps prevent plaque formation. It does appear that, anecdotally, oil pulling works to some extent. There aren't any likely adverse health effects associated with oil pulling so I figured, why not give it a shot? I will say that I do believe oil pulling has at least made my teeth noticeably whiter. 

If you want to give oil pulling a try, take about 1 TBS of oil (I use coconut) and swish it around your mouth for up to 20 minutes, do not swallow. You might want to try oil pulling while you are taking a shower or doing other things around the house, because let's be honest, 20 minutes is a long time. Remember, based on my research, oil pulling is only recommended as a supplemental practice to modern dental care. If you would like to learn more, check out these articles:

ADA: The Practice of Oil Pulling

Should you try oil pulling?

Tooth brushing, oil pulling and tissue regeneration: A review of holistic approaches to oral health

Web MD: Should you try oil pulling?


And there you have it, my oral care routine that is a little more natural and a little more sustainable! If you have any questions, please feel free to shoot me an email at hello@wholly-nourished.com or comment below!