Chewing gum prevents cavities?? People have been chewing gum for thousands of years. Yes, that’s correct – thousands of years. While chewing gum was originally used for the specific purpose of freshening breath, and is still used today for the same reason, chewing sugar free gum has actually been proven to fight cavities and tooth decay. Not all gum is created equal, however, so it is important to know what is in your gum before you begin chewing.
When people chew gum the mouth produces an extra amount of saliva. Saliva alone helps to cleanse the mouth, and the increased amount of saliva produced while chewing gum can help to cleanse the mouth of acids and bacteria that are harmful to the teeth. Chewing gum also helps to remove plaque buildup from the teeth. The rubbery consistency of chewing gum constantly brushes up against the teeth while being chewed, wearing off much of the plaque that has built up on the teeth. Plaque is a harmful substance that, when not removed from the teeth, causes cavities and tartar buildup. The most important thing to know about chewing gum, however, is the importance of chewing sugar free gum. Gum with natural sweeteners is not beneficial to the teeth because they can actually cause cavities instead of preventing them.
At Family & Cosmetic Dental Care, Dr. Mitul Patel can recommend certain brands of gum that he professionally feels are the best for dental hygiene. He can also help to determine if chewing gum will be beneficial to your specific dental health because there are some (those with TMJ, for instance) who would not benefit from chewing gum. Chewing gum should never replace proper oral hygiene, but it can be used as a supplement to your ongoing oral care as studies have shown that chewing gum prevents cavities as everyone should be thrilled about that.
Posted by Mitul Patel DDS, Family & Cosmetic Dental Care
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