Ayurvedic and Holistic approaches in dental treatments


Ancient Indian Ayurveda has already mentioned several holistic dental care procedures. There are so many ayurvedic medicines having equivalent effect like modern medicines. Research is on going to incorporate such ayurvedic medicines to replace some modern medicines which may have severe side effects compare to these natural medicines. Dentistry is not also remained behind. Researchers are coming up with new integrative dentistry approaches every year. There are many natural remedies for tooth pain but still there is no replacement or bypass for modern dental procedures e.g. root canal treatment. Some of natural medicines could be used as antibacterial and analgesics during root canal treatment. Use of ancient medicines completely or their extract in modern dentistry for preventive and regular oral hygiene is new kind of holistic approach dentistry. Many mouthwashes and toothpastes are coming with herbal extract in them. As bacteria becoming resistant to many antibiotics, alternatives to them are important.

1. Rinsing with natural oils or oil pulling ( sesame oil, Sunflower oil etc)
Oil pulling is a holistic dental care mentioned in Ancient ayurvedic literature, Charaka Samhita and Sushrutha’s Arthashastra. It’s a widely recommended and advised procedure in Ayurveda since more than 3000 years. The process is called Kavala Gandoosha/ kavala Graha in vedas. It can cure headache, migraine to hypertension, diabetes, asthma and many more systemic diseases according to ayurvedas.
A specific type of oil pulling for dental benefits called as Roopana Gandoosha has been mentioned in Ashtanga Sangraha.
Various oils like Refined Sunflower oil, Sesame oil, olive oil, coconut oil etc can be used for Oil Pulling. It was said that it detoxifies body. Oil Pulling is having dental benefits and scientific studies on it showed that it resulted in a significant reduction in plaque and gingivitis scores.

Instead of expensive mouthwashes with carcinogenic ingredients one can use these natural ways to keep oral hygiene good.
Method-
Method is simple just like a regular mouthwash. Just take 10-15 ml of any organic oil, till the mouth is half filled. Pull the oil through the teeth and start swishing liquid from left to right, front to back and vice versa. Liquid should move inside the mouth. Swish approximately 8-10 minutes or till you feel a fullness in your mouth. At the end the oil will be milky white, thin and frothy. Spit the liquid.

2. Aloe vera
Aloe vera contains many vitamins, including Vitamin A, C, E, B1, B2, B3 (niacin), B6, choline, folic acid, alpha-tocopherol, beta-carotene. Aloe vera is also one of the few plants that contain vitamin B12. Bradykinase is an enzyme present in aloe vera, which reduces skin inflammation. Along with these it also contain many minerals.
Aloe vera extract is being used in the form of gel in various dental treatments as a part of integrative dentistry. Aloe vera gel is used to treat oral lichenplanus, oral submucous fibrosis, recurrent apthous ulcers, radiation induced ulcers, gingivitis. Its gel can be used as a root canal filling material in primary teeth. Many types of toothpaste and mouthwashes are coming up with the aloe Vera extract.

3. Green tea
Green tea extract contain catechin. It has inhibitory effect on many periodontal pathogens. It inhibit the growth of P. gingivalis, Prevotella intermedia and Prevotella nigrescens and adherence of P. gingivalis on to human buccal epithelial cells. Many commercial mouthwashes and toothpaste are introducing green tea extracts in their products.
Green tea is natural remedy to prevent gum diseases. Having green tea regularly keep oral hygiene good as well as detoxifies body.
4. Triphala ( means three fruits)
It is a powder of three fruits like Amalaki (Embelica officinalis), Haritaki (Terminalia Chebula) & Bibhitaki (Terminalia belerica). The ingredients of it has antimicrobial effects. It contains Tannins, quinones, Flavones, flavonoids, and flavonols. It also contains galic acis which has antioxidant effect. Vitamin c is also present in an abundant amount in it.
It prevents dental caries, gingivitis. Most of the toothpaste are coming up with these extracts. Triphala extract in liquid form can be used as a root canal irrigant. The use of herbal alternatives as a root canal irrigant might prove to be advantageous considering the several undesirable characteristics of NaOCl.
Triphala mouth rinse can prevent gingivitis and periodontitis.
5. Turmeric

Curcumin is an active constituent of turmeric. It is a strong antioxidant.
• Rinsing the mouth with turmeric water (boil 5 g of turmeric powder, two cloves, and two dried leaves of guava in 200 g water) gives instant pain relief. This makes it a natural remedies for tooth pain.
• Massaging the aching teeth with roasted, ground turmeric eliminates gum pain and swelling.
• Applying the powder of burnt turmeric pieces and bishop's weed seed on teeth and cleaning them makes the gums and teeth strong.
• Applying a paste made from 1 tsp of turmeric with ½ tsp of salt and ½ tsp of mustard oil provides relief from gingivitis and periodontitis. Rub the teeth and gums with this paste twice daily.
In an integrative dentistry, curcumin is widely used in pit and fissure sealants as well as in dental-plaque detection system. Mouth washes made from turmeric can prevent plaque formation. It can be used as a sub gingival irrigant to treat periodontal diseases.
6. Neem (Azadirachta indica)
It has got antibacterial, antifungal, anticariogenic and anti-plaque effects. In ayurveda it was mentioned to use neem tree stick to use for brushing teeth. After chewing on the one end of the stick, it becomes soft like a brush. Such brush can be used to clean teeth. It can prevent gingivitis and periodontitis. It can also be used as a root canal irrigant during root canal treatment. Many mouthwashes and toothpastes are available with neem extract. Neem stick brush can induce gingival recession due to trauma from brush, therefore it should be used as careful as.

7. Miswak (Salvadora persica)
It has antibacterial, antioxidant, anticariogenic, antifungal effects. It has also got analgesic and anti-inflammatory effects. Miswak extracts are commonly used in mouthwashes and toothpastes. Miswak sticks are also used to clean teeth, as mentioned for neem sticks.
8. Ginger
Ginger has analgesic properties. It is one of the natural remedies for tooth pain. 500 mg of ginger rhizome powder Capsule is as effective as ibuprofen in controlling postoperative pain after wisdom tooth surgery.

There are so many ayurvedic and herbal remedies for oral hygiene methods and those are need to verify scientifically.

References
1. Arijani and Khoswanto: The use of 90% Aloe vera freeze drying as the modulator .Dent. J. (Maj. Ked. Gigi), Vol. 41. No. 2 April-June 2008: 74-76.
2. Padmawar A and Bhadoriya U. Phytochemical investigation and comparative evaluation of in vitro free radical scavenging activity of Triphala & Curcumin. Asian Journal of Pharmacy and Medical Science. Vol 1 (1), 2011
3. Mangaiyarkarasi S. P., Manigandan T, Elumalai M, Cholan P, and Kaur R. Benefits of Aloe vera in dentistry. J Pharm Bioallied Sci. 2015 Apr; 7(Suppl 1): S255–S259.
4. Kriplani R, Thosar N, Baliga MS, Kulkarni P, Shah N, Yeluri R. Comparative evaluation of antimicrobial efficacy of various root canal filling materials along with aloevera used in primary teeth: A microbiological study. J Clin Pediatr Dent. 2013;37:257–62.
5. Sakanaka S, Aizawa M, Kim M, Yamamoto T. Inhibitory effects of green tea polyphenols on growth and cellular adherence of an oral bacterium, Porphyromonas gingivalis. Biosci Biotech Biochem. 1996;60:745–9.
6. Prabhaka, Senthilkumar M, Priya MS, Mahalakshmi K, Sehgal PK, Sukumaran VG. Evaluation of antimicrobial efficacy of herbal alternatives (Triphala and Green Tea polyphenols), MTAD, and 5% Sodium Hypochlorite against Enterococcus faecalis Biofilm Formed o
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