According to the American Dental Association (ADA), chewing sugarless gum may actually help keep your mouth healthy.
The research found that chewing gum containing xylitol, a sugar substitute, for 20 minutes following a meal can help prevent cavities.
Why does this happen?
The act of chewing produces saliva, and saliva is important for keeping your mouth healthy by neutralizing acids. It also helps fight diseases and removes food that is stuck in your teeth.
But why not just chew regular gum?
Although chewing does produce saliva, if you have gum that is full of sugars it will mix with the saliva and can spread cavity-causing bacteria. You want to make sure that you are buying gum that contains xylitol, as this sweetener does not spread the cavity-causing bacteria that sugary gum does. You can also view the ADA’s list of approved gums.
It is important to remember that chewing sugarless gum is not a substitute for brushing and flossing. Chewing sugarless gum can be an aid in fighting cavities, but proper dental hygiene and regular trips to the dentist are the best ways to fight against cavities, decay and gum disease.
If you are due for a cleaning or have any questions about the health of your mouth, be sure to schedule an appointment with Dr. Aerni in Strongsville, OH.