Coconut oil has been praised by the media for its nutritional benefits in the last few years. Although research is still being conducted to confirm its overall health benefits we are now seeing coconut oil being used in the care of teeth and gums. The Canadian Dental Association states that 7 out of 10 Canadians will develop gingivitis at some time in their lives. Battling gum disease will be, for most of us, a reality at some point and there are alternatives to traditional toothpastes and mouthrinses that are filled with chemicals. This is where coconut oil comes in. There are several proposed benefits to using coconut oil whether in a toothpaste or as an oil pulling regimen. The oil has an antibacterial quality and when mixed with saliva it creates a soap-like substance. Both of these features eliminate the need for chemicals like triclosan and surfactants (SLS) in our toothpastes. For those looking for alternatives to mainstream toothpastes a coconut oil based paste can easily be made with a few ingredients like baking soda, essential oils and salt.