• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com pie forums private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • r ranson
  • Mike Haasl
  • paul wheaton
  • Dave Burton
master gardeners:
  • John F Dean
  • jordan barton
  • Carla Burke
  • Leigh Tate
  • Steve Thorn
  • Greg Martin
  • Jay Angler

How to use a toothstick a.k.a. Miswak / Sewak

Posts: 43
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Hi everyone

I'm sure many of you have come across this before. An alternative to plastic toothbrushes, and probably still today the most commonly used tooth cleaning device on the planet

But having started with some hazel sticks, I had some questions for anyone with experience of this.

Firstly, how did/do indigenous people keep their toothsticks. I presume they just take a stick from a tree as they need it, but living in London, I have to take a few sticks and keep them stored. Problem is they start to dry out and go hard. I've put them in an airtight jar, and will see how that goes but I've read that other toothsticks sweat, so mabe these will do the same.

Also, what woods / roots that I could grow in the UK do not disintegrate as you use it? Hazel tends to do it. I haven't tried any others, but I've got some licorice root on order, and may try some others.

Posts: 70
Location: nemo, 5a/b
kids fungi foraging trees cooking building
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
    Number of slices to send:
    Optional 'thank-you' note:
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I have similar questions. I tried a number or different trees and found that I liked juniper, or eastern red cedar, the best. When I tried to harvest extras for later use, they didn't seem to work as well when they dried out. I mean, if I worked at it long enough it would eventually soften up and work, but I wonder if it lost some of the natural anti-microbial properties of the wood when it dried? Last year I bought some dried licorice root from a health food store and it had great flavor and was even kinda foamy, but it seemed like it got too soft to really work well as a brush.

On my planet I'm considered quite beautiful. Thanks to the poetry in this tiny ad:
19 skiddable structures microdoc - now FREE for a while
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic