Studies show that chewing sugar-free gum for 20 minutes after you eat can help prevent cavities. The key to chewing gum’s efficacy is a actually the body’s first natural defense against oral emergencies: saliva production.
It is not the gum itself that fights cavities. Rather, the act of chewing the gum increases saliva production. Saliva defends against cavities by washing away harmful bacteria that cause plaque buildup. Saliva even neutralizes acids present in the mouth that are responsible for tooth erosion. In the same way that dry mouth can cause tooth problems, promoting saliva production through chewing gum benefits teeth.
So why sugar-free gum? Chewing regular gum can also promote saliva, certainly, but the sugars present feed the bacteria the saliva is trying to fight. This negates any benefits of chewing gum. Chewing sugar-free gum is recommended by the American Dental Association.
Some sugarless gums have even earned the ADA Seal of Acceptance. Since its inception in 1931, this seal has been found on many dental healthcare products. It cannot be purchased; it must be earned. It guarantees that you are getting a product that does what it says it does–in this case, help prevent cavities by promoting saliva production.
For information on more simple habits you can integrate into your daily routine to avoid cavities, call Foreversmile Dentistry at 305-274-0425. If you would like a dental exam from Dr. Marilyn Amaral, book an appointment to come see us at our dentist office in Miami, Florida. We are here to help you get the smile of your dreams!