Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology
Journal of Indian Society of Periodontology
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Microbiological effects of virgin coconut oil pulling in comparison with palm oil pulling as an adjunctive oral hygiene care for patients with gingival inflammation: A randomized controlled clinical trial


1 Department of Periodontology, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University; Center of Excellence in Periodontal Disease and Dental Implant, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand
2 Department of Microbiology and Research Unit on Oral Microbiology and Immunology, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University; Department of Research Laboratory of Biotechnology, Chulabhorn Research Institute, Bangkok, Thailand
3 Undergraduate School, DDS Program, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok, Thailand

Correspondence Address:
Oranart Matangkasombut,
Department of Microbiology, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University, 34 Henri-Dunant Road, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330
Thailand
Supreda Suphanantachat Srithanyarat,
Department of Periodontology, Faculty of Dentistry, Chulalongkorn University, 34 Henri-Dunant Road, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330
Thailand
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jisp.jisp_768_20

Objectives: Virgin coconut oil (VCO) pulling has antimicrobial activity and has been promoted as beneficial to oral health; however, limited information exists on its clinical effectiveness. This study aimed to compare the microbiological effects of VCO with palm oil (PO) pulling when used as an adjunctive oral hygiene care. Materials and Methods: Thirty-six volunteers with gingival inflammation were randomly assigned to start with (1) VCO (test) and (2) PO (control) interventions in a crossover design. Oil pulling was performed for 28 days adjunctively to oral hygiene routine. After a 21-day wash-out period, the participants switched the oil type and restarted the protocol. Plaque samples were collected for microbial culture at baseline, after the first oil pulling period, after washout, and after the second oil pulling period. The total, aerobic, and anaerobic bacteria and Mutans streptococci (MS) counts were recorded. The mean differences between VCO and PO were compared by paired t-test. Results: The number of total, aerobic, or anaerobic bacteria after 28 days of oil pulling was not significantly different from baseline in both PO and VCO groups. However, PO pulling demonstrated a significant reduction from baseline of MS count (P = 0.010), while VCO pulling showed no significant reduction. There was no statistically significant difference in the mean changes of any microbiological parameters between the two treatments. Conclusions: VCO pulling did not show statistically significant superior benefit against plaque bacteria over PO pulling. Using PO pulling as an adjunctive oral hygiene care may reduce the number of MS, but this requires further investigations.


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    -  Siripaiboonpong N
    -  Matangkasombut O
    -  Pengcharoen H
    -  Boonchaiyapluk B
    -  Rujiraprasert P
    -  Srithanyarat SS
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