Benefits Of Miswak In Islam

AS the holy month of Ramadan begins, Muslims across the world are observing fasts that require abstinence from all food and drink from dawn to dusk.

The blessed month is rooted in faith, history and culture, and few practices emphasize that as much as the use of miswak — a teeth-cleaning twig. Many Muslims use miswak during the day to maintain freshness, oral hygiene and to protect overall dental health. In the Islamic tradition, using miswak is a well-known sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

Various Ahadith document the elevated status and significance of miswak. Abu Hurairah once narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Were it not (for the fear) of overburdening my Ummah, I would have ordered them to (brush their teeth with) Siwak at every Salat.” (Sahih Muslim)

Aisha narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) said, “The siwak is a means of purifying the mouth and pleasing the Rabb.” (Nasai)

Abu Hurairah further narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) said once on a Friday, “O Community of Muslims! Allah has made this day an Eid for you, so take a bath and needfully brush your teeth with siwak.” (Tabarani, Majma’uz-Zawaid)

Modern science upholds some of the health benefits of using miswak.

As per a report published in Saudi Medical Journal, a number of scientific studies have demonstrated that miswak possesses antibacterial, anti-fungal, anti-viral, anti-cariogenic, and anti-plaque properties.

There is now increasing scientific evidence that miswak has medicinal properties and helps fight plaque, recession of gums, tooth decay, bleeding gums, strengthen the enamel in your teeth, deep periodontal pocket and Leaves you with a healthy mouth.

Miswak can be sourced from various trees except for those known to cause harm, such as pomegranate and myrtle trees.

Although using miswak is not obligatory, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) encouraged Muslims to use it.

To use a miswak, simply chew off about one centimeter of the twig at one end and then continue to chew it until it softens and forms bristles. The softening can be sped up by dipping the end in water to separate the fibers. Once bristles are formed, the miswak can be used like a regular toothbrush, without paste.

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Irfan Mushtaq

Irfan Mushtaq is staffer at Kashmir Observer. He tweets @irfan_dar9

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