For many of us, popping a piece of gum is a daily occurrence or even multiple times a day, but is it good for your smile? The answer is it can be. Before concluding that chewing gum is good for your teeth, there are some factors to consider.
Is Chewing Gum Good for my Teeth? The Answer, it Depends.
The first thing to consider is, are you choosing sugar-free gum? If so, chewing a piece of sugar-free gum after every meal is a great way to help clean the teeth. According to the ADA, “Clinical studies have shown that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes following meals can help prevent tooth decay.
The chewing of sugarless gum increases the flow of saliva, which washes away food and other debris, neutralizes acids produced by bacteria in the mouth, and provides disease-fighting substances throughout the mouth. Increased saliva flow also carries with it more calcium and phosphate to help strengthen tooth enamel.”
However, if you are chewing gum that contains sugar, you are increasing your risk of developing tooth decay.
If you experience TMJ issues or pain, chewing gum may not be a great idea. Chewing unnecessarily may put additional pressure and stress on the jaw. This may increase pain or issues being experienced. You should consult your dentist to determine if gum should be avoided.
Teeth deformities may be experienced due to excessive chewing. These deformities may include changes to bite alignment and damage to the enamel of the teeth. If you chew gum frequently, you may want to consult your dentist to determine if there are signs of wear and tear.
Talk to Your Dentist
Your dentist is a great resource to discuss any questions or concerns you may have. Come prepare to your next visit as your dentist can recommend frequently and even specific types of gum to choose.