Chewing gum can have beneficial effects on your teeth. It increases the flow of saliva in your mouth, which is very helpful after eating. The abundance of saliva can help wash away food particles, neutralize acids and fight bacteria. Studies have shown that chewing gum for 20 minutes after a meal or a snack is effective in decay prevention.
But the beneficial effects do not end there chewing gum can protect against tooth erosion and help those suffering from a dry mouth too. Recaldent, which is a chewing gum that contains calcium and phosphate, can repair damages caused by acid erosion and replenish the tooth enamel.
There are many varieties of chewing gum, and not all chewing gum varieties have the same benefits. One of the major differences between chewing gum brands is the presence of sugar. While chewing gum that contains sugar, can be testier and have the same effect of increasing saliva flow in the mouth, the sugar in the gum can be used by bacteria to produce the acids that cause tooth decay, practically cancelling out any positive effects the gum chewing creates. We at Tooronga Family Dentistry recommend sugar-free gums that will not cause decay. These sugar free chewing gum contain sweeteners such as aspartame and xylitol, which are better for you.
Chewing gum can be used to deliver drugs and help quit smoking too. In a study that compared smoking and chewing gum in dealing with stress, it has been found that chewing gum was helpful in preventing the need to for smoking a cigarette.
The major disadvantage of chewing gum is, that with excessive and prolonged use, it can lead to wear in the jaw joint and muscle pain. For those who suffer from pain in the jaw joint or clicking when opening the mouth, it might be good to stay away from chewing gum.
If you have more questions about the effects of chewing gum please don’t hesitate to contact us at Tooronga Family Dentistry.