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100% natural toothbrush  RSS feed

 
Aljaz Plankl
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Video:

(Witty) instructions on how to make and use a chewing stick from wide variety of trees and bushes. If in doubt, consult with your dentist! I did, and when she saw how clean and healthy my teeth are, she became a fan, too! Once you get skilled, you'll be able to reach every surface of every tooth -- using both hands! No plastic toothbrush can get the teeth as clean as a chewing stick.
More info in my article: Miswak
 
Warren David
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Interesting. The first time I saw somebody using one of those I wondered what on earth he was doing.
 
Aljaz Plankl
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Thanks for a reply. Yea, it was the same for me, and it was when i met this guy. He picked me up for a ride to go to some permaculture friends. He was having the stick in his mouth and i was like; What's that?
 
travis laduke
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I tried the tree in my yard. Not very good.
 
Aljaz Plankl
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Do you know how to ride a bicycle? Well if you want, try another type of wood, especially now in winter when some woods are not as good as in summer. Hazel for example is like that.  But i tell you, once you make yourself a good one...
 
orto del sole
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yup! is wonderfull for teeth plankl! its used for centuries in india, from the neem tree. Neem being a very potent bactericide and strengthner, u never have any dental problems if its Neem, i always bring my students little bunches when i visit india.
 
solomon martin
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I often used licorice root as a supplemental tooth brush when I was a child.  The fibrous root lends itself perfectly for this purpose, plus I liked the flavor.
 
travis laduke
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I do in fact know how to ride a bike. My problem is that I'm completely tree dumb.
 
Matthew Fallon
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i couldn't make it through that video (he was just too doofy to tolerate !)

i've gotten licorice root chew sticks at native powwows and loved them. also like those tea tree toothpicks.

others i've seen recommended are Dogwood, sassafras,  sweet gum, pine, birch, and spruce trees, as well as from willow and sage.  anything that will fray nicely when chewed and be tolerably tasty.

i had to look the miswaak one up,  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvadora_persica

 
travis laduke
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I think my tree is some kind of Elm.
 
                    
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travis laduke wrote:
I think my tree is some kind of Elm.


hackberry?
 
Dale Hodgins
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    Sugarcane and corn stalks are both mildly abrasive and palatable. Many trees have a bitter taste. I've used both. You might want to rinse afterwards. Unripe apples make a great natural mouthwash.
 
                                          
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Kirk Hutchison
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I tried this with a branch from my peach tree. It works really well. I'll never have to buy a toothbrush again 
 
                            
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this is my favorite toothbrush:


(its quercus ilex, mediterranean (holly) oak)

i also recommend primitive toothcare pamphlet, rather than youtube videos
 
Len Ovens
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hvala wrote:
i also recommend primitive toothcare pamphlet, rather than youtube videos


Ok, is there a link where we can get one?
 
                            
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two posts above mine
 
Len Ovens
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hvala wrote:
two posts above mine


Thank you, downloaded and saved.
 
Jonathan 'yukkuri' Kame
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Very cool, I have a tiny baby neem tree (whole thing only the size of a chewing stick) and was wondering how to use it when it gets bigger. 
 
Shailor Clark
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Location: Roanoke Island, North Carolina
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I'm really glad to see this thread!

Sometime last year I started using tooth-sticks, and ever since I hardly use a toothbrush anymore. Also my girlfriend uses them more frequently.

I've never had a cavity & don't plan on having any gum or tooth problems in the future.

Any kind of oak is great to use. Also, sassafras [root or twig] tastes great & alsol has antibacterial effects.

The Primitive Toothcare zine is where I found out about this as well!

Cheers
 
Rob Viglas
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This is awesome stuff, thank you for posting!

I do have one question. Are there any sticks i shouldn't chew on here in Vermont that anyone knows of? Or do I just go for the old apple tree?

I guess that's two questions...

Can't wait to try this out!
 
                            
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theres some trees that contain some poisons also some of them  have very bitter or ugly taste. sp i think you should stick to those trees mentioned here or better download this pamphlet primitive toothcare its explained all there...
 
Denise Lehtinen
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Okay, the first one I tried I just clipped off my avocado tree and that has worked well enough for a while.  But now the one I've gotten from my oak tree is all covered with lichen (or something green like that), and I am wondering if I should do something to remove that outer growth OR if that stuff is safe to ingest.  Does anyone have any advice for me?
 
Shailor Clark
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I use oaks [red or white] & sassafras twigs.
I also remove the bark before chewing on them. Not sure if ingesting the lichens would be harmful but probably not very palatable!
Cheers
 
Kota Dubois
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Lichens can be dried and ground into a flour substitute/extender so I don't think they are dangerous. They will get rubbery when wet though.
 
James Koss
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I've been using just my fingernails to clear my teeth for several years now, combined with a rather healthy and aware nutrition. My teeth are rather white. This method seems more fun though. Fingernails can be harsh! haha So, I think I'll make a switch. Lots of Oak around.

By the way, I don't have the reference with me, but I stopped brushing my teeth, after reading an article from a 1900's dentist researcher, who visited many non-modern (who haven't become industrial, yet, at the time) communities all over the world (America, Europe, etc'), and discovered that they all had white healthy teeth. None of them brushed their teeth in any way! He concluded that nutrition was the key to it, and that specifically, they all had local fresh food and water.
 
Jocelyn Campbell
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This thread is an excellent resource for using a branch or twig for teeth cleaning. All the plastic and nylon in regular toothbrushes has been driving me crazy! And why switch to a wooden handle, when the bristles are still nylon. Urgh.

I was considering finding myself a branch, as you all are describing, though here in Montana, we're in what Sepp might call a conifer desert. I knew it would take some research and perhaps a hiking trip or two (or three) to find a better type of branch than that.

So, being lazy like this (did I catch that from Paul ) I was happy to find on Amazon a natural wood handle and boar bristle toothbrush!

Country Gent wooden handle toothbrush (that's an affiliate link for the empire, btw).

Oh! Fred stopped by as I was writing this and said some folks use the frayed root of alfalfa. He hasn't tried it yet, but if he does, he might post about it here: Fred's photos from Wheaton Labs.

And of course, Wikipedia has a page: teeth cleaning twig.

Plus, I found in the sumac and its uses thread, that one permie likes to use sumac twigs for this.
 
Deb Stephens
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Jocelyn Campbell wrote:

Plus, I found in the sumac and its uses thread, that one permie likes to use sumac twigs for this.


I just found this comment... I am the permie who likes sumac toothbrushes. I also thought some of you who don't have sumac or who have different trees you might like to try would be interested to know a few alternatives. As I walk through the woods, I constantly test for good toothbrush material, so I have quite a list of possibilities for you:

First though, just about any common wood can be used by most of us, but if you are a sensitive soul, I would avoid obvious potential allergens like the sumacs (DO NOT USE POISON SUMAC!!! It's the one with white berries); many trees containing potent resins or growth inhibitors like cedars (actually junipers), pine, walnuts, (contains juglone) etc. or any of the trees on this list -- especially those with the symbol for "digestive irritant" or for potential "dermatitis", and those that may have potential for cardiac problems, like Yew or Oleander. Go here to check FIRST! http://www.wood-database.com/wood-articles/wood-allergies-and-toxicity/

My personal favorites -- in no particular order -- are sumac, dogwood, buckthorn, elm, redbud and hickory. However, keep in mind that I do not have allergic reactions to any of these and a couple of them are on that list! Test sparingly before deciding if it works for you. Dogwood and hickory should be safe for almost anyone, though. Both have relatively hard wood, so you will want to finely chew them to soften the bristles before brushing. Happy brushing!
 
Ben House
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Really enjoyed the thread, I fully intend to try this out.
 
James Dunn
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Feeling the teeth sweaters in the wee hours, and not having access to my toothbrush here at work, I immediately walked outside, and pulled a suitable stick off a tree (not sure what kind) and began chewing on it. This thing is amazing. Toothpaste is for chumps! Thanks for the knowledge.
 
William Bronson
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I wonder if pear twigs would be good. My Bartlett needs a good pruning anyway!
 
Joy Oasis
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This is so cool, I was looking for info on local trees suitable for teeth cleaning, and found this thread. Thank you all for the information.
I wonder, if California Oaks are good too? They are a bit different.
 
Joy Oasis
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urbanresistance McCoy wrote:Here this seems very relevant http://zinelibrary.info/primitive-toothcare-diy-guide-uncivilized-oral-hygiene

This is not available anymore. Can we find it somewhere else?
 
James Koss
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Just picked a small branch, a twig really from some local fruiting tree. Some form of cherry tree. Works just fine. I bet almost any twig would work, as long as the fibers suit you.
 
kyle saunders
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I use yellow birch, especially now in the spring with all those big buds. free toothbrush AND minty fresh flavours!
 
Karen Donnachaidh
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I'm surprised that no one has mentioned my favorite - American beech. The "toothbrushes" taste exactly like beechnut chewing gum. The nuts can be collected in the fall and the young leaves can be cooked as a green in the spring.
 
Todd Parr
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Joy Oasis wrote:
urbanresistance McCoy wrote:Here this seems very relevant http://zinelibrary.info/primitive-toothcare-diy-guide-uncivilized-oral-hygiene

This is not available anymore. Can we find it somewhere else?


In case anyone else doesn't find it, it's the first link on this page:
Primitive tooth care
 
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