Did you know that the average American consumes 1.8 pounds of gum each year? Many people chew gum habitually and mindlessly, chewing away for hours each day. It’s important to know how chewing gum affects our dental health. You may have heard that it’s both good and bad for your teeth — so what’s the real answer?
Is chewing gum good for your teeth?
Yes, it is, but not all the time and it depends on what type of gum you choose to chew. Chewing gum can help prevent tooth decay, as long as you select a sugarless gum. Chewing gum causes your mouth to produce more saliva, which helps neutralize and rinse away some of the acid that forms in your mouth when you break down food. So, if you chew gum after a meal, you may be helping to protect your teeth and promote oral health. Also, the minerals generated by the extra saliva can even help strengthen your tooth enamel, which also reduces your risk of dental cavities.
However, chewing gum isn’t all good news. If you make a habit of chewing gum that contains sugar, the bacteria can feed on the sugars and do more damage to your mouth. Chewing too much gum can lead to excess wear and tear of teeth and effect your jaw. Here are the pros and cons to help you decide if gum chewing is for you.
While gum chewing does have its benefits, it’s important that brushing, flossing, and six-month check-ups are essential to your oral health. Making those a regular part of your routine is the best thing you can do for your mouth!
Do you have any questions about chewing gum? Call Westermeier Martin Dental care to schedule an appointment with your dentist 716-508-4547.