It has been stated that chewing gum can be beneficial and healthy for your oral hygiene and even helps prevent tooth decay. But are these statements true? Let’s investigate.
Cavities and tooth decay usually form based on the consumables we put into our mouth. From different acid filled foods to excessive amounts of sugar, and even tobacco and alcoholic products.
A great way to prevent the formation of cavities is by having extra saliva in your mouth. Saliva helps wash away extra acid and sugars from being within our mouths. This helps keep teeth clean and free from a cavity and decaying substances.
An easy way to keep an excess amount of saliva is by chewing sugar-free dental gum throughout the day.
Aside from being a great saliva producing agent, it’s been stated that gum can help remove stuck food particles from between teeth. Once the sticky gum grabs a hold of the leftover food particles, they often stick to the gum and are then washed down through the excess saliva you have in your mouth. They can also pop up and if you feel the remains on your tongue, it’s easier for you to remove with your finger or by spitting.
Removing food from between teeth is a benefit on its own. Not only does this help with overall oral hygiene, but it helps with gum hygiene, so you have fewer chances of sore gums, inflammation, and cuts on your gums.
Other benefits to chewing gum:
- Reduction of mouth discomfort
- Reduction of mouth and jaw stiffness
- Increase in swallowing
- Reduction in dry mouth
- Reduction of halitosis or bad breath
- Increase in mineralization
- Reduction of plaque build-up
When Should You Chew Gum?
Now that we’ve established that chewing gum is beneficial to your oral health and that you should only chew sugar-free gum (because sugar-filled gum is not beneficial), you may be wondering if there is a certain time frame that is better for you to chew gum than others.
Simply put, yes. Dentists and Dental Laboratory Technicians will recommend you should chew gum within 20 minutes of eating if you are not able to brush your teeth after your meal or snack.
This helps your mouth remove any remaining food from between teeth and also helps ensure you have enough saliva production to wash away any remaining particles that can cause bad breath. Let’s face it – bad breath is not fun! Sugar-free gum can be a simple way to remove bad odors from your tongue.
What Type of Chewing Gum is Recommended by Dental Professionals?
Gum comes in many flavors, sizes, and styles. Most dental laboratory professionals + dentists will recommend you chew sugar-free gum and choose one that has a minty-fresh scent. This helps cover up any bad odors left from the food you ate and eliminates the risk of adding excess sugar to your teeth which causes cavities.
If you’re one of those who like to know if this practice has been approved by a state or federal agency, it has. The ADA approves the act of chewing sugar-free gum to keep teeth and mouths clean.
Not sure if your favorite gum contains sugar? By looking at the ingredients you’ll be able to see is sugar has been included. Look for ones that promote sugar-free on their packaging. Sugar-free gum typically contains xylitol which is a pretend sugar for taste. If you find your favorite gum has this ingredient, it’s approved!
Pacific Aesthetics Dental Studio is a combination of two dental labs in California where we work exclusively with dental clinics to provide custom dental veneers, inlays and outlays, implants, wax-ups, bite-guards, bridges, and crowns. We make sure each of our dental clinics is offering patient handouts and we offer our own resource tab + blog where you can find an abundance of information regarding cosmetic dentistry procedures, dental and oral hygiene tips, and much more!