In a previous post, I spoke about a tooth-cleaning twig that I use instead of a toothbrush. When I told some people about this, their instant response was a laugh. Others said, “How far is this natural thing going?” And, my reply is: “As far as I can take it.” Ha. Of course, I do not let healthy living become an idol, but I try to feed my body and soul with the knowledge that God gives me; and my knowledge of God’s healing earth evolves as I do.
The 411 on the Miswak
There are a variety of tooth cleaning/chewing twigs that you can find in parts of the world, but I am going to focus on the one that my husband found called Miswak /Sewak.
Miswak has roots in the Middle East and Africa. It comes from the Peelu or Arak tree.
If I could get this straight off the tree, it would be better, but the dried vacuumed sealed ones are still pretty potent. If you buy, or have one, be sure that it is from a fresh batch. You can tell because the bristles should be whitish-brown. If it is a dark brown color, then it is not too fresh.
An herbalist friend told my husband that we could just pick a twig off certain trees around us, but we have not experimented with that yet. I usually buy mine on eBay, but there are a lot of online stores you can buy from as well. Miswak is becoming a little more pop now, but I still get ten or twelve for about 12-16 dollars. That batch should last a while, depending on how you use them.
How Has the Miswak Helped?
I have been using the Miswak for about two years now. I have noticed that my husband does not get a build-up of plaque on his teeth like he used to, and he does not get canker sores in his mouth anymore. We both noticed that our taste buds are sharper. I believe it is healing because it has completely stopped my back tooth from aching. While consistently using the Miswak, I ‘ve had no toothaches or sensitivities, even if I eat something that is not the purest.
Depending on your diet, it is sometimes recommended to use the Miswak before you eat or 30 minutes after you eat. This is recommended because the pH level of your mouth drops after you eat something sugary or acidic; this makes your enamel softer. I just make sure I rinse my mouth out with an alkaline rinse if I brush after eating.
I carry around my Miswak and usually use it a few times a day, but… sometimes… my husband and I don’t brush, and we just chew on fresh herbs or Ceylon cinnamon sticks in-between brushing. My breath is always fresh, and my teeth feel clean constantly.
Other Health Benefits
The health benefits of the Miswak go beyond the teeth, and assist in healing the whole body; a few of the noted benefits are:
- It reverses and heals tooth decay
- Prevents gum disease
- It is beneficial in killing harmful bacteria
- Creates a pleasant fragrance in the mouth and eliminates bad breath
- Assists in digestion
- May cure your headaches
- Improves memory
- Whitens the teeth
- Clears the voice
- Brings healing to the stomach
- Improves taste buds
- Beautifies the complexion
And this study shows that chewing sticks may indeed do a better job than a normal toothbrush.
Now, after soaking this info in, you may want to try it. So I will go over a few steps that may be helpful. It was hard for me to find information on how to use it when I bought my first batch, but I see videos on YouTube now.
The Simple Steps
You will have to take the Miswak out of its package. 🙂
- Peel about 1cm of the bark off, then chew on it.
- Put it in water till it softens a bit if you want. (Do not soak too long, or you may lose some benefits) If it still feels too hard, then dip the tip in water once again.
- When it is ready, you should be able to chew on the tip easily, and it should be bristle-like.
- Your Miswak is ready for use.
Every time you brush your teeth you can dip the tip in water, but it is not necessary.
The bristles will at some point look a little like an old toothbrush when it is ready for a change, kind of like a worn out broom. All you have to do is clip off the old bristle-tip and start again.
*Miswak may cause a slight stinging sensation upon use
*Try to keep it in a place that will not attract mold
*Do not use chlorinated water if you dip it in the water; try to use purified water if you don’t have fresh spring, solarized or glacial water.