All Posts tagged oral health

The oral effect of cannabis

Cannabis, also known as marijuana among other names, is a psychoactive drug from the Cannabis plant intended for medical or recreational use. The main psychoactive part of cannabis is tetrahydrocannabinol (THC); one of 483 known compounds in the plant, including at least 65 other cannabinoids. Cannabis can be used by smoking, vaporizing, within the food, or as an extract.
Marijuana is derived from the cannabis plant. The main active ingredient is commonly known as THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and is the part of the plant that gives the “high.” There is a wide range of THC potency between different cannabis products.
Heavy use of marijuana has been reported to cause respiratory problems, bronchial complaints, diarrhea, abdominal cramps, tachycardia, acute panic and paranoia and impairment with short-term memory and motor skills. The most beneficial use of marijuana is its antiemetic properties, especially for patients receiving chemotherapy and its ability to reduce intraocular pressure in the treatment of glaucoma. It is used widely for cancer patients, AIDS patients, and other chronic diseases.
Saliva is the mouth’s own, effective cleaning system – it dilutes and washes away food particles and acids that cause erosion. Erosion occurs when enamel is dissolved from tooth surfaces, and teeth may appear shorter and have visibly worn surfaces, making them sensitive. Cannabis reduces the saliva production leading to a dry mouth. If a person often has a dry mouth, erosion may damage their teeth more quickly.
Periodontal (gum) disease is one of the most common chronic diseases among adults and is linked to saliva production. The inflammation associated with the disease causes a breakdown in supporting connective tissue and bone, leading to tooth loss. Smoking cannabis and tobacco can cause damage to teeth, gums and other soft tissues in the mouth. Soft tissues include lips, tongue, gums, cheeks and the roof of the mouth.
Even small changes in how much saliva is produced can cause bad breath, a sore or burning mouth, and make it harder to chew, swallow and speak.
Cannabis smoking (and eating) causes changes in the lining of the mouth called cannabis stomatitis. In the long-term, this leads to chronic inflammation which is a risk factor for oral cancers.
Users must talk to their dentist openly about their use of drugs (not only cannabis), as illicit drugs (as well as prescription drugs) can react with some anesthetics commonly used in dentistry to cause Health complications. If they are aware of the patient’s drug use, the dentist can also keep an eye on the various potential risk areas in the mouth (teeth, gums, soft tissues), which may be affected by the drug use. They can devise a specific care plan, which may help the user protect their teeth and gums.


Oil pulling and oral health

Oil pulling can be explained to be the process of swishing edible oil (coconut, olive, sesame or the like) throughout the mouth for usually one to five minutes, but for up to as long as 20 minutes depending on the case. Oil pulling has supposedly been practiced for centuries in southern Asia and India. The basic idea is that oil is swished in the mouth for a short time each day and that this action helps improve oral health.

How to Oil Pull
While it sounds like some kind of labor-intensive job in the resource sector (kind of like grape stomping or cattle roping), oil pulling is pretty simple.
Oil pulling is to be done first thing in the morning, before eating or brushing your teeth:
• Take about a tablespoon of edible oil (such as olive, sesame, coconut, or sunflower oil).
• Put it in your mouth without swallowing.
• Swish it around for 10-15 minutes while doing your other bathroom business.
• At the end of the 10-15 minutes, spit it out.
• Rinse your mouth completely with warm water.
• Floss, brush and get on with your day.

The benefits of oil pulling
1. Whitens teeth
2. Strengthens teeth, gum, and jaw
3. Prevents cavities and gingivitis
4. Helps with bad breath
5. Detoxification of the body
6. Relieves a headache and migraine
7. Help to improve quality of sleep

The basic idea is that oil is swished in the mouth for a short time each day and that this action helps improve oral health. Just as with Oil Cleansing for the skin, the principle of “like dissolves like” applies, as oil is able to cut through plaque and remove toxins without disturbing the teeth or gums. All of the oils that are often used are completely edible and considered to be healthy when eaten, so they aren’t problematic when swished in the mouth. Oil pulling is observed to bring improvement in oral hygiene when practiced correctly and regularly. Limited available research on the effect of oil pulling on oral hygiene shows promising benefits of oil pulling procedure on the oral cavity.