Does Chewing Gum Clean Your Teeth? Facts and Precautions
Chewing gum is known to help sharpen your jawline and freshen your breath. It has also gained some recognition for cleaning and whitening your teeth. This can come as a surprise as elders always warned you against cavities that ‘sugary’ gums can cause.
Yet, recent research shows that sugar-free gums boost saliva production. This counts as a measure of health benefit when it comes to dental health.
Can Chewing Gum Clean Your Teeth?
Yes. Chewing gums can clean your teeth.
There are different types of chewing gums that don’t have much sugar involvement. It helps you combat bad breath and improves your oral care routine.
Now, which type of gum is good for the teeth? The gums that have Xylitol. This sugar alcohol has a natural sugary taste, so your taste buds will not get upset.
Xylitol is produced and advertised as a corn and tree barks’ by-product to replace sugar. As a sugary alcohol type with the same sugar amounts as a drink, they aren’t intoxicating nor harmful.
Xylitol in Chewing Gums
Xylitol is made of a chemical formula that comprises sugar and alcohol molecules. But is considered natural sugar as it’s found in various fruits and vegetables.
With that, Xylitol also has a healthy calorie count (if you are a fitness enthusiast), so it doesn’t jeopardize your health consciousness.
Research published in the Journal of Natural Science, Biology, and Medicine has shown Xylitol gums prevent tooth decay.
Chemical reduces blood sugar levels while also minimizing the production of mutans streptococci (MS). It fights plaque and saliva and loosens their roots to grow in the mouth.
Dental Benefits of Chewing Gums
Many dentists support chewing gums with healthy ingredients like Xylitol for regular teeth exercises. Yet, this is not the only reason you should have Xylitol. There are tons of other benefits that we will look at in this section.
Stops Tooth Decay
According to the American Dental Association, if you chew gum with Xylitol after every meal, you will lower tooth decay risks. How? By cutting down on sugar consumption. Sugars and bad oral hygiene are the main reasons. You are already conscious of sugars by choosing Xylitol, so half of the job is done.
Prevent Dental Caries
As for dental caries, the cause is weak enamel, and that’s where Xylitol comes into the picture.
A study done by the National Center of Biotechnology Information shows how Xylitol strengthens enamel. The researchers experimented on animals and found that Xylitol boosts essential bone minerals. With that, Xylitol also remineralizes enamel and strengthens it.
Counter Tooth Infections
With its numerous health benefits, Xylitol also protects your mouth from dental infections. This ‘sugar-free sugar’ possesses antimicrobial qualities. It stops candidiasis, causing oral thrush, from growing or spreading in your mouth.
Candidiasis needs sugar to survive. It loves it. So when you minimize sugar consumption, candidiasis’ main source of growth is cut off, and eventually, you’ll get rid of it.
Provides Whiter Teeth
Whiter teeth by using Xylitol? You may not know it before, but when chewing gum companies advertise their chewing gums as ‘whitening,’ they are irrelevant.
Many commercial dental products use Xylitol to offer teeth whitening benefits. What’s the science behind it? Teeth whitening chewing gums (Xylitol) promotes healthy saliva production, which doesn’t let smoking stains sit on your teeth for long due to dry mouth.
We can’t say that chewing gums are the main ingredient in teeth whitening solutions, but they are integral.
Helps With Mouth Dehydration
If you are a smoker or somebody who generally drinks little water throughout the day, you should make chewing gums with Xylitol a daily snack. Dehydration causes bad breath and makes your mouth a bacteria-friendly place.
Chewing gums after meals helps with sugar breakdown. When you chew gum, you produce a good amount of saliva.
The National Library of Medicine experimented with a group to evaluate gum’s effects and found out the group with chewing gums had better saliva flow than the other. This saliva flow balances your mouth’s pH levels, paving the way for other benefits.
Saves You From Bruxism
Xylitol saves you from bruxism. A study shows how this ingredient relieves stress that leads to teeth grinding. Frequent or unintentional teeth grinding in stress hurts your enamel and makes your teeth sensitive to hot and cold foods.
Chewing gums with lesser or no sugar elements have significant positive impacts on your teeth. But, of course, it’s not something that can replace your dental hygiene practices. You will have to do what you do to maintain your oral hygiene and add chewing gums with Xylitol as an after food snack.
As we are discussing everything that directly or indirectly relates to chewing gums’ connection to your dental health, it’s important that we also talk about the restrictions.
When to Be Careful with Xylitol Chewing Gums?
Xylitol-based chewing gums are usually safer, but an overdose of anything can turn the tide. So it’s better to stay on a moderate scale.
Here are some precautions to help you:
- Eating chewing gum all the time can hurt your jaws. This precaution is especially for people with jaw problems.
- Xylitol is NOT for dogs. Many people feed them to dogs to make them stain-free, but it has detrimental effects on the poor animal’s health.
- If you have serious dental problems, ask your dentist before including Xylitol in your diet. This is to do so there’s no chance for any mishap
- Excessive xylitol consumption can disturb your digestive system.
There are generally no safety tips involving Xylitol, but it’s good to stay on a safer side. Look out for anything that can sabotage your health.
Xylitol chewing gums are a worthwhile addition to your oral care routine. This is especially true if you plan on long-term usage. This way, you can track and experience the change xylitol brings about.
Many chewing gums include Xylitol. As mentioned earlier, if you have jaw disc displacement, you can go for xylitol candies.