Oral Health with Essential Oils

My Notes from the Holistic Oral Health Summit
An interview with Dr. Zielinski

Dr. Eric Zielinski
web page drericz.com

Essential Oils for Oral Health

I wanted nothing to do with essential oils until I met my wife. She had a skin condition when she was a teenager and in using an over the counter facial product it reacted with a chemical in the well water. This literally burned off the three to four layers of her skin from her nose down to her neck, oozing sores and nothing worked. A friend who is a Chippewa Indian and practices it’s medicine told her she needed lavender. She got a therapeutic grade lavender oil and within a couple weeks it was healed. When we got married she had her own protocol and I never thought much about it until I got athletes foot. My immune system was compromised and I went to the gym had a little yeast overgrowth and tried the tea tree solution. I got a knock off brand and nothing happened, I threw it away. It wasn’t until I was commissioned to write a series of public health reports on essential oils and that’s what got me.

I looked at the research, unbelievable amounts of data confirming oregano is more effective than antibiotics with killing MRSA and other antibiotic resistant bacteria. Frankincense connected to cancer solutions and you name it. I was convinced intellectually and then I wondered what did I do wrong with my athletes feet. I found out I didn’t use a true essential oil, 75% of the oils on the market are adulterated, meaning they are either diluted or flat out fake. We are duped in buying products that are not real and unfortunately the FDA refuses to monitor, evaluate or test any of this stuff. Anyone can put anything on their label, you could have an essential oil and it could say 100% but it could be just one drop of oil with a whole bottle of carrier. So I ended up using a true therapeutic grade oil and that’s when my health changed, that’s when we started seeing a major difference in our kids health, it took us to another level. To me essential oils were the missing link to my own natural health regimen and now it’s just part of our life.

The cornerstone of health as we know is in the gut, that’s what has been publicized because 70-80% of the immune system is in the gut. One thing that isn’t common knowledge is really the cornerstone of health is in the mouth. That’s one of the reasons you go to your doctor, your naturopath, homeopath, even your medical doctor they will look at your mouth. First thing they do, typically it’s how we are trained to evaluate our patients. In the last 30 years the connection between oral health and chronic disease has been pretty much firmly set. Poor oral health has actually been clinically linked to cardiovascular disease, poor glycemic control in diabetics, low birth rate, pre-term babies, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis. Oral infections has been named the main problem for patients suffering from cancer, HIV and even pneumonia. When you look at the data even the CDC has come out in 2010 stating 1 in 2 Americans over 30 years old has periodontal disease. That’s pretty profound if you think of it, 50% of every adult male and female over 30 has periodontal disease. That is something we have to recognize, it gets worse when people get older because that jumps to 71%. For those people who don’t know a loose definition of periodontal disease is really just a chronic inflammatory disease that effects the gum tissue and the bones supporting the teeth. If left untreated it could lead to tooth loss and chronic disease like we just mentioned.

For the key public health concern, for me, this is preventable. Out of all the preventable diseases this is probably one of the most preventable diseases. People just typically brush their teeth, floss, and go to your holistic dental expert. You go to them for regular check ups because again it’s highly preventable, and using natural remedies, essential oil based toothpaste and oral mouthwashes. Here is the key, the real problem, is the medical approach is not working. A large number of clinical trials have established that topical antimicrobial agents like chlorhexidine, which is an antiseptic and antibacterial mouthwash, or triclosan which is an antimicrobial agent that’s been registered as a pesticide since the 1960s. That these are the current approach to helping patients deal with gingivitis and dental plaque. Basically the medical and the pharmaceutical industry are poisoning our people because of the chemicals they’re putting in our oral mouthwash. And it’s never even an option, it’s never even a thought to use essential oils or any other natural ways.

Here is an interesting headline from the medical daily.com back in 2013 they ripped the veil off of this, their headline was antiseptic mouthwash raises heart attack risk and blood pressure because chlorhexidine kills off good bacteria that helps blood vessels relax. This article quoted the study from the free radical biology and medicine journal that tested on 19 patients using this chlorhexidine mouthwash and a control. They found that the oral nitrate reducing capacity and the nitrite levels after each study were changed, meaning they actually found an increase of 3.5 millimeters per mercury effect in blood pressure by people just using this mouthwash twice a day. How many of us now use mouthwash on a daily basis and how many Americans use mouthwash to replace their brushing and flossing, which unfortunately a lot of folks do. Whether they are tired at night or just lazy or just don’t know any better. The study showed what this does, it kills off the good bacteria which plays a vital roll in the plasma nitrate levels and ultimately effects the body’s ability to control blood pressure which we know will lead to cardiovascular disease.

This has a cascade effect that leads to stroke, myocardial infarction, you name it. According to GlaxoSmithKline the corsodyl manufacturers, corsodyl is the brand name of the mouthwash that they tested. According to them the antiseptic mouthwash contains .2% by volume of chlorhexidine and it’s recommended for patients with bleeding gums, irritated gums, ulcers, infections and even people who are post surgery to promote healing. But according to them it contains .06% chlorhexidine for everyday use which is safe, we know it’s not safe, we know it’s poison. Even if it’s parts per billion if you’re going to give a poisonous mouthwash to someone who just had oral surgery their main immune system defense, the skin has been violated, it’s been broken open. Those chemicals are going to rush right into the bloodstream quicker than if they used the oral mouthwash just with a healthy mouth. We are seeing the problem here is not only the fact that the drugs are bad, the medical approach is bad, but people are just kind of blindly following this advice.

Jonathan Landsman, host – There is a different attitude in conventional medicine like you just said bombarding the body with all these toxic chemicals like in the cancer industry. All they want to do is kill cancer cells with all these toxic chemicals, radiation, chemotherapy, which is admitted to actually triggering secondary cancers but most people are not made aware of these things. In fact the vast majority of these people feel like that is the standard of care and the only way to go, sadly. But when you flip it around and you leave the United States there are clinics overseas where Dr. Rowe, and people can look this up, will take a cancer patient in and try to help them with biological medicine. The very first thing he does is to clean up the mouth before giving anything, nutrients, supplements, or any kind of therapies that would help improve immune function. The first thing he does is to clean up that persons mouth of all the infections, get infected root canal treated teeth out of the mouth. Get all the mercury laced fillings out of the mouth. This is their main objective before anything else. Clearly we have to shift our attention to things that are actually going to be helping us not killing us.

Specifically about the issues we’re talking about right now there is a 2009 study showed that essential oils in the verbena family are as effective as chlorhexidine in reducing microbial plaque and gingival inflammation. You can look at it one of two ways, one is the essential oils are quote, the essential oils are as effective as the conventional toxic route. Well you can use either, that to me is misguided thinking. I think the best way of looking at it is in fact what I would say, is the essential oils are even more effective than the chlorhexidine because there is no side effects related to them. If you think of it, how profound, is this the essential oil route is as effective with the gingival irritation, inflammation and microbial plaque, but without the actual damage done to the body to me is infinitely more beneficial.

Lets talk about kids and teething, that’s a pretty important health concern that is a natural phenomenon but the parents in America have been very misguided. They are being led astray by going to their local drug store and flooding their kids mouth with God knows what. We see how easily clove and chamomile oil can quickly replace any conventional or over the counter approach. Even the FDA advises against using OTC for kids that teethe, they say this is a natural occurrence of life these kids don’t need drugs. They recommend gently rubbing the gums with your finger or give them a cool teething ring or a cold wet frozen wash cloth to chew on. But that doesn’t stop, that article is tucked away in some folder somewhere on their .com website and no one is going to look that up. People are going to the benzocaine model which contains lidocaine which is an anesthetic, your anbesol, hurricaine, orajel, your baby orajels. Applying clove essential oil directly onto the gum, we have done this with our children it’s very effective. If someone is concerned because we consider clove as a hot oil that can cause irritation or burning you might want to dilute with a little bit of coconut oil. There is saliva in the mouth that actually does dilute it, we apply just one little drop on our finger and put it right over the babies gum and that numbs it. We also follow that up with one drop of chamomile, it’s so soothing, so calming, and has a pleasant taste. We have found those two in conjunction with one another is a great help with the children and help them sleep at night.

Another thing is a lot of parents are unaware that the symptoms of teething are natural and don’t need medical attention. For example, sleep disturbances, decreased appetite, congestion, coughing, vomiting, diarrhea, fever, this is the body’s natural response for cutting teeth. A great example with how essential oils can help with symptoms, my daughter recently had a 104.5 temperature. You learn in school 104 plus you rush that kid to the hospital, well my wife and I know a little better and we want to let the fever run, so to speak, because the fever is there for a reason. The fever is there to kill bacteria and we don’t want the fever to go out of control because it can cause some problems. What we did to monitor and keep the fever at bay we use an essential oil application with peppermint and orange, we heavily diluted them with fractionated coconut oil. We spread that around from the crown of her head to the bottoms of her feet along her back. Within minutes the fever went down and she was much more comfortable. The fever was still there a little bit, it was kept at 101, but 101 I’m much more comfortable with than 104.5. It’s that sort of approach if you’re a parent and if you’re a new parent, if you see your children with a runny nose, diarrhea or fever, first think about the teeth. If you see them gnawing on your fingers or chewing on their pacifier it’s a good sign that kid is not sick, and if they have a fever just be careful, you can use a peppermint-orange approach and that can help calm the fever down so the child can sleep. But let the fever run and let the baby do what it needs to do, this is in a sense a right of passage we all have to do. Don’t worry it sounds like they’re tortured and sounds like they’re miserable but I don’t remember teething, really the people who suffer are the parents.

According to an article published last year in the Journal International Oral Health, essential oils are very effective in various ways with approaching a natural solution when it comes to at home or even at your holistic dentist. A lot of folks think the remedy needs to stay at home, no you bring the remedy where you are. With that I mean it’s an anxiolytic, for example if you have to have oral surgery, if you need to get a root canal or have some sort of condition that you have to go to an endodontist or an oral surgeon for. Well aromatherapy of lavender has been proven to naturally reduce anxiety and stress which helps the patient not only in the waiting area but actually during surgery. I would ask your holistic dentist whether or not you could bring a diffuser for aromatherapy being used, or even chamomile as well. If your dentist will not allow that then you could use your aromatherapy before hand.

Also apply the oils topically, the half life of these oils has been shown that they will be effective and in the body, in the bloodstream up to five hours. Right before you go to the dentist I would apply some lavender and chamomile, some other calming oils you can put them on your wrist, the back of your neck. You want to dilute them a little bit with some fractionated coconut oil, they will get you in a position where you’re just a little bit more calm. It also reduces the pain of needle insertion. Even orange, it was shown in one study, to help with reducing salivary cortisol levels and pulse rate due to child anxiety state. When you take your kids to your holistic child dentist use orange, lavender or chamomile and the child will respond much better. It’s also a great oral hygiene adjunct, essential oil rinses are very effective. Studies have even shown they’re as effective as fluoride in inhibiting plaque. The reality is every essential oil has antimicrobial properties, and that’s something to remember because you can choose whichever one you want. You can use cinnamon, clove, ginger, lemon, peppermint, orange, there are very few oils that are not recommended at all. As long as it’s a true therapeutic grade and it isn’t laced or isn’t diluted with a carrier oil you should be fine.

Other studies have shown that essential oils are fantastic for wound dressing, it’s actually has better effects than the local anesthetic that people use. Again clove, that comes up a lot with oral health, and orange they have a nice taste together which is nice. Even dental implants, one study showed that lavender and Melissa essential oil, which is based off the lemon balm herb, was shown to have antibiofilm activity. That’s pretty cool because when you look at these dental implants, the surface of them, can be treated with essential oils to help the biofilm production. If you have dentures or anything else this is a good idea. What are you using in your toothpaste, and even asking your holistic dentist to treat and even pre-treat, even as a preservative with essential oils. It’s a little controversial but studies have shown essential oils have a higher inhibitory activity tested against microorganisms than methylparaben in cosmetic emulsions. It’s not like your dentist will but maybe he or she could do this, but we need to change the paradigm. We are finding essential oils are much more effective than the parabens and methylparabens in the cosmetic oral implants. It’s about awareness, so we can go to our dentist and demand using essential oils instead of parabens as a preservative in my – you name it.

We are going to continue to talk about clove because that is the key antimicrobial numbing agent for people that have sore teeth, sensitive teeth, clove is a fantastic solution to that. There is an interesting study that talked about lavender, geranium, tea tree and peppermint as a blend. The study was conducted to examine the effect with oral care with essential oil in improving hospice patients with terminal cancer. That’s kind of a niche group and we’re starting to see more interesting studies where they’re looking at cancer patients and oral health. They took 40 patients with terminal cancer that were admitted to a hospital in Korea and they tested them, subjective tests on comfortness and an objective oral state examination. They found that the patients that were using essential oils had unbelievably higher scores than using the conventional route. This was in regards to colonizing candida specifically. Cancer patients that had candida overgrowth and microbial infection the essential oils were helping better, this is for cancer patients as well. This is just not for healthy people, one problem a lot of our cancer patients have in their mindset is I don’t want anything to counteract my meds.

Especially people with autoimmune disease because the conundrum with autoimmune disease is you have to take a drug to, in a sense, inhibit your immune system which to me is the most asinine thing I’ve ever heard of in my life. You’re telling me your going to shut down your immune system because you have an immune system disorder, which no one can really understand anyway. Because it’s relatively new in the medical industry and they’re just creating new autoimmune diseases almost by the day. I try to explain to people when it comes to essential oils and cancer the research has actually suggested that essential oils will help people. Not only help people kill cancer but actually help make their chemotherapy more effective, you need to do natural therapies with that. I hear this all the time with people that we coach, in Americas mindset it’s this, natural or conventional, there’s no in between. I don’t think that’s very fair because I think a lot of people need to be free to choose whatever they want and if you choose the medical route you better darn use essential oil therapies in conjunction. Why? Because it will help the pharmaceutical approach be more effective and it will actually help with side effects. That’s really important for people to take away from this interview is that it’s not an all or nothing, you can do both. The benefit and the blessing of that is now a lot of doctors are working in conjunction with naturopaths and I think that’s wise.

The most important oils for oral health are clove for sensitive teeth, gingivitis, bleeding gums, canker sores. Lavender for blood blisters, also for canker sores they calm that down, you could apply one drop straight or if you have sensitive skin you can dilute it with fractionated coconut oil. Fractionated coconut oil is a little bit different than coconut oil because manufacturers actually fractionate out the vitamins, minerals and omegas so it’s just the fat. That’s important because this isn’t just for nutritional purposes, we’re using this as a carrier oil and we do not want to create any barrier between the essential oil and the skin. However, we want to dilute the essential oil for people who have sensitive skin so there is no burning or irritation. Fractionated coconut oil is transdermal, it’s like these essential oils are transdermal. They penetrate down to the cellular level into your bloodstream so fractionated coconut oil is the number one key dilution approach to that. Whitening, you can get great whitening effects just by making do it yourself toothpaste. You can use oils like clove, orange, rosemary, cinnamon and eucalyptus, and plaque virtually any essential oil is antimicrobial so they will all help with plaque.

I can’t give essential oils their fair share without talking about oil pulling because they are so closely related, some people with mouth ulcers, fevers and indigestion. Folk medicine models consider brushing contraindicated because it would create a tendency towards asthma, coughing, thirst or vomiting. Oil pulling has been used for centuries as a solution to this. Oil pulling is really preventative as it is curative and the Ayurvedic model has records of this going back 3-4,000 years and it’s connected to purifying the entire system. As it holds each section of the tongue connecting to organs, there have been over thirty systemic diseases ranging from headaches and migraines to diabetes and asthma that the Ayurvedic text has claimed that oil pulling can help. Oil pulling is simply just having oil in your mouth and swishing it around slightly for 10-15 even 20 minutes and you spit out the oil, you don’t swallow it. What it does it actually helps with emulsification because a problem we have with our current mouthwashes and toothpaste is it doesn’t really effect any of the fat soluble bacteria and toxins in our mouth. A lot of the toxins in our mouth are fat soluble which means you need a fat to suck them out. If you were ever to wash your hands with cold water and they were greasy it won’t work you need to use soap, the soap emulsifies the grease which is the first step of fat breakdown so the fat particles can be released from your hand.

That’s what oil pulling does it literally sucks out the toxins out of your mouth, fat soluble toxins. It’s been shown clinically to help with preventing tooth decay, halitosis, bleeding gums, dry throat, cracked lips, and even strengthening teeth, gums and jaw. Most people in India do oil pulling with sunflower or sesame because sesame is actually considered a gift of nature to mankind because it’s very nutritional, it’s considered the queen of oil seed crops. In America coconut oil is the hot thing and it also tastes better. What you do is take a teaspoon or tablespoon of oil first thing in the morning and you put it in your mouth, you can even do this while you’re taking your shower and other morning stuff. You lightly swish it in your mouth and be sure to spit out the oil into a trash can because it can clog the pipes in your sink because the coconut oil will coagulate. And I suggest why not add essential oils to it, I have found a few different blends are very tasteful and very effective as well. Clove and orange are great, you can use some citrus oils, lemon, grapefruit, bergamot, a drop each right into your oil pulling blend. Peppermint is very invigorating, frankincense and myrrh is very healing, it’s recommended to do 3-4 times a week. I wouldn’t do it too often it’s very detoxifying, some people are very toxic. I have known people, obese people, where oil pulling they would get nauseous because it stirs up so many of the toxins in their body. If you get nauseous that’s a normal side effect, a normal symptom of detoxification just go at it slow. Maybe you can only handle five or ten minutes. My wife and I do up to twenty minutes 3-4 times a week it’s very helpful it keeps your breath fresh and keeps you healthy.

There was one study in Iran that proved a drop of peppermint in your mouth or on your tongue, even a drop of peppermint in your water and drinking it will increase your respiratory airways and lower blood pressure to boost athletic performance. Those of you who like to run first thing in the morning brush your teeth, do some oil pulling, put a drop of peppermint in your mouth and watch what will happen. You will actually recover quicker, breath better, it’s unbelievable.

For people who don’t have essential oils in their toothpaste you are really wasting your money, you need essential oils, you need the fat in the toothpaste to emulsify and take out those fat soluble toxins and that’s one of the reasons why regardless if it’s fluoride, regardless if you do mouthwash, 50% of Americans have periodontitis because this is one of the reasons we’re wasting our money on these toxic toothpaste. The best do it yourself remineralization tooth powder and toothpaste that I’ve seen, that’s the key not only do we want to fight bacteria we want help remineralize our teeth and the key to that is bentonite clay. Bentonite clay comes from a pure source of undisturbed deposits in the ground and what’s special is it draws the toxins out of the body. Some people even ingest it for detoxification.

Remineralizing Toothpaste
1/3 cup Bentonite clay
1/4 cup hot water
1 teaspoon stevia
1/4 teaspoon Himalayan pink salt
1 tablespoon coconut oil
20-30 drops essential oils

Take the clay and mix it up with the hot water so that it’s all smooth, add the stevia to taste, then the salt and coconut oil. Mix this all together. Then add essential oils of choice to about 20-30 drops total.
Some combinations I like are –
lemon, lime, grapefruit
orange, clove, peppermint
cinnamon, clove, orange,
chamomile, wintergreen
tea tree, lemon
frankincense, myrrh

You can even make different batches, put them in a mason jar. You never want to essential oils in plastic because they will leach the plastic. The plastics are so toxic and the petrochemicals are so weak that it will be leached out by the essential oil. Put them in a mason jar or whatever glass jar you have. When it comes to mouthwash, this is easy it’s essentially like hand sanitizer. Now hand sanitizer, because of the triclosan, hand sanitizer is just as bad as mouthwash. The solution to both is simply put water with oils, that’s it. You could get two cups of filtered, distilled or reverse osmosis water, whatever you’ve got, you add 10-20 drops of oil and shake it up, put a little in your mouth, like a Dixie cup, swish it around for a minute or two and that’s your solution.

One of the most empowering moments for me was regaining control of my health. Getting plugged in by going to sites like mine and Jonathans at naturalhealth365.com is one of the most important things a person can do to educate themselves. Ultimately we are accountable for our own health, our doctors aren’t, our naturopaths aren’t, our kids aren’t, our parents aren’t, we are. I just want to encourage and empower everyone to go forward, we’re giving you the fishing pole here we’re not giving you the fish. That is what a true teacher and a true educator and doctor does. So take it, run with it, play around with it, have fun, and enjoy this new life because it’s very rewarding.

The information contained on this site is for educational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for diagnosis or treatment from a licensed physician. It is essential that you discuss with your doctor any symptoms or medical problems you may be experiencing.

M. Scherker medical researcher