How to heal cavities with salt?

In this brief guide, we will answer ‘how to heal cavities with salt?’ Also, we will answer the possible cause of cavities and see other remedies to heal cavities.

How to heal cavities with salt?

You can not heal cavities with salt, as a cavity is an end-stage of dental caries disease. Although salt has some antimicrobial properties (8) which can reduce the amount of bacteria in the mouth, it does not heal cavities, since cavities are a result of a demineralization of the enamel and dentin of the teeth. Once your tooth enamel has demineralized to a point leaving a hole behind, it can not be reversed. 

It can only be treated through dental procedures by filling the cavity. All stages of cavities can be treated up until the point of collapse (cavity). Salt does not reverse or rescue the dental cavity at any point. The prevention and treatment of dental cavities and periodontal disease have been shown to reduce the risk of diabetes and heart disease significantly (3).

What causes a cavity?

Most tooth problems begin with damage to tooth enamel. Any weakness in teeth’s enamel is a place where decay can take hold (1). Cavities are small holes in teeth caused by decay. Food and bacteria build up on the teeth and along the gum lines that form a sticky film termed plaque. When a person eats, the bacteria in plaque produce an acid that damages your tooth leading to cavities. 

Your mouth is always dark and wet, making it the perfect place for bacteria to live. Every moment of every day, bacteria are breeding and multiplying in your mouth and on your teeth. In just a number of hours, there are enough bacteria to form a sticky, clear film on your teeth called plaque. The more hours that go by without brushing, the thicker this film gets (1). Streptococcus mutans and lactobacilli are the bacteria that play a role in decay.

If the plaque is not removed, it may lead to tooth decay and gum infection may destroy your bone structure supporting the teeth and lead to tartar formation.

Plaque builds up more easily in places like cracks, pits and grooves of your teeth, in between your teeth, around any fillings particularly when chipped or broken and close to the gum lines.

Here’s a breakdown for the pre-cavity and cavity stages;

Damaged enamelDamages enamel and dentin
No holes but may have visible white spotsPresence of hole
Usually not painfulPainful

Can you get rid of cavities at home?

Cavities once formed can only be treated through professional treatment by a dentist. 

There are a few remedies you can do at home that can strengthen your tooth enamel to reverse early demineralization that can prevent tooth decay. The process is called remineralization.

Good oral hygiene like regular brushing, flossing and dental cleanings can prevent and may reverse cavities. Toothbrushing is the most important oral hygiene measure (1). Fluoride is a common way to prevent decay and cavities. High fluoride toothpaste or direct application of fluoride helps remineralize the tooth enamel and may prevent cavities.

High fluoride toothpaste works more effectively to prevent caries than toothpaste containing low fluorides. This hypothesis was investigated and proved to be true.

Similarly, a study suggested that using sodium fluoride toothpaste and mouth rinse are more effective against the self-applied fluoride methods.

Some effective remedies

Some people still prefer remedies over dental procedures. These home remedies may help you prevent tooth cavities.

Oil pulling

Oil pulling is a part of an ancient system of alternative medicine called Ayurvedic. This involves the process of swishing a tablespoon of sesame or coconut oil around for 20 minutes and spitting it out. Sesame seed oil is used most commonly because of the antioxidants present in the sesame. These antioxidants are sesamin, sesamolin and sesaminol. These lignans have certain actions on living tissues like detoxification of toxins, antioxidant effect, and potentiate the action of Vitamin-E (2).

Some claims that oil pulling is not scientifically validated but other claims that it can improve tooth health (3). A study claims that oil pulling with coconut oil can improve dental health and oral hygiene. Coconut oil is composed of 92% saturated acids, with lauric acid making up for 50% of these saturated acids. Monolaurin and monoglycerides of lauric acid have been identified to have antimicrobial activity against a range of microorganisms (4). 

Oil pulling is effective against caries becaus the viscosity of the oil probably inhibits bacterial adhesion and plaque co-aggregation. Another possible mechanism may be the saponification process that occurs as a result of alkali hydrolysis of fatty acids (2).

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera tooth gel is effective in fighting off the bacteria that cause dental caries. Its cause is that aloe vera gel is anti-bacterial in nature and prevents the build-up of bacteria in the mouth. Aloe vera gel has a number of components such as aloin, aloe emodin, aloetic acid, anthracene, aloe mannan, aloeride, antranol, chrysophanic acid, resistanol, and saponin. Aloin and aloe emodin possess strong antibacterial and antiviral activities. They inhibit protein synthesis from bacterial cells, thus explaining their antimicrobial activity (5).

Tea tree oil is also an effective cavity disinfectant, because it shows antimicrobial effect through cell lysis and the loss of membrane integrity which leads to leakage of ions and the inhibition of respiration (5).

Limit phytic acid

Phytic acid is considered an antinutrient that demineralizes and contributes to tooth decay as it holds up mineral absorption and their bioavailability. Avoiding food, cereals or legumes that contain phytic acid can prevent tooth decay and cavities, these include the following (6);

  • Maize
  • Wheat
  • Rice
  • Rye
  • Kidney beans
  • Haricot beans
  • Pinto beans
  • Navy beans
  • Blackeye beans
  • Broad beans

Food manufacturers have taken an initiative to reduce the phytic acid content to enhance the bioavailability of nutrients as per a conducted research.

Vitamins and minerals

Minerals like calcium, phosphorus and magnesium build up the structure of teeth. Vitamin D is crucial in forming healthy teeth, protects against dental caries and releases calcium in saliva that remineralizes the teeth.

A 2020 study suggested that having inadequate minerals leads to absorption problems, increased tendency to bleed and tooth loss. The lack of calcium and vitamins D, A, B, and C leads to hypomineralization, delayed eruption of the tooth, bleeding gums, disturbed alveolar bone patterns, angular cheilitis, and periodontal diseases (7).

Recent research suggested that children with dental caries have low levels of vitamin D in their blood and high levels of calcium. Study findings said that Vitamin D is crucial for oral health. It delays the onset and progression of dental cavities. Vitamin D is a hormone necessary for the intestinal absorption of calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus, which are essential for proper mineralization of the bones and the teeth  (7).

Avoid sugary drinks and food

A higher consumption of sugars in the diet is associated with a leading cause of cavities. Sugars mix with bacteria in the mouth and form an acid that wears down the tooth enamel.

Research suggested that free sugars before bedtime increases the risk of dental caries. Sugary foods are fermented by bacteria, and the presence of bacteria increases the amount of acids on the surface of uncleaned teeth, which can erode enamel and demineralize other hard dental tissue (7).


In this brief guide, we will answer ‘how to heal cavities with salt?’ Also, we will answer the possible cause of cavities and see other remedies to heal cavities.

Hopefully, you find this guide helpful. If you have any questions or comments please do let us know.


  1. Franjić, Siniša. Damage in Dentistry. J Health Care Res, 2021, 2, 146.
  2. Bhardwaj, Vinay Kumar. Ayurveda and holistic approach in oro-dental care: An overview. SRM J R Dental Sci, 2015, 6, 181.
  3. Naseem, Mustafa, et al. Oil pulling and importance of traditional medicine in oral health maintenance. Int j health sci, 2017, 11, 65.
  4. Woolley, Julian, et al. The effect of oil pulling with coconut oil to improve dental hygiene and oral health: A systematic review. Heliyon, 2020, 6, e04789.
  5. Patri, Gaurav, and Aliva Sahu. Role of herbal agents-tea tree oil and aloe vera as cavity disinfectant adjuncts in minimally invasive dentistry-an in vivo comparative study. J Clin Diag Res, 2017, 11, DC05.
  6. Gupta RK, Gangoliya SS, Singh NK. Reduction of phytic acid and enhancement of bioavailable micronutrients in food grains. J Food Sci Technol, 2015, 52, 676-84.
  7. Uwitonze, Anne Marie, et al. Oral manifestations of magnesium and vitamin D inadequacy. The J steroid biochem mol biol, 2020, 200, 105636.
  8. Kurita, Nobuyuki, and Shigeru Koike. Synergistic antimicrobial effect of ethanol, sodium chloride, acetic acid and essential oil components. Agric biol chem, 1983, 47, 67-75.

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