Did you know that chewing gum is actually good for you?
Chewing gum fights cavities, it it true–sort-of. The real truth is, that the saliva produced while you chew sugarless gum fights cavities. Saliva can help wash away food residue and bacteria that come together and form the thin layer known as plaque. Saliva can also neutralize the properties of acids that seek to destroy your tooth enamel.
Studies have also shown chewing sugarless gum to help reduce symptoms of heartburn after eating, for similar reasons. Saliva is produced, washing the acids out of the mouth. The excess saliva also causes a lot of swallowing, pushing the acids down the esophagus so that they never reach the teeth in the first place.
As previously mentioned, studies have demonstrated that chewing sugarless gum can help prevent cavities, especially when chewed after eating. During the time shortly after eating, your teeth can be overly sensitive, so it is important to avoid brushing them with abrasive toothbrushes, toothpaste, or similar tools. Instead, seek out products such as sugarless gum and mouthwash to clear away the harmful acids without potentially damaging your teeth. Be sure to use ADA approved products to ensure you are indeed fighting cavities.
It is true that chewing any kind of gum, not just sugarless gum, can produce saliva. However, chewing sugar-sweetened gum feeds the bacteria the saliva is trying to combat, making it useless in the fight against cavities.
If you would like to speak with Dr. Carolyn Yu and our team about other ways to keep your smile bright, call Carolyn L. Yu, DDS at 510.974.2147. Our team of oral health care superheroes are here to help!