The next time you buy a pack of gum, make sure you pay attention to the ingredients.
The American Dental Association (ADA) found that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes following a meal can help prevent tooth decay.
Saliva is essential for fighting cavities and the act of chewing increases saliva. Saliva helps remove food that is stuck between your teeth, neutralize acids and creates disease-fighting substances.
But won’t chewing any gum do the same thing?
Although the act of chewing does increase saliva, the sugar in gum that contains it mixes with saliva and stays in your mouth for long periods of time. This can lead to an increased risk of cavities. Chewing sugar-free gum that uses ingredients such as sorbitol or xylitol, which are sugar substitutes, increase saliva without allowing sugar to harm your teeth.
It is important to remember that chewing sugarless gum is not a substitute for brushing or flossing. To see which brands of gum are good for your teeth, be sure to view the American Dental Association’s approved list.
If you are concerned about the health of your gums or you’re due for a six-month cleaning, be sure to schedule an appointment with Dr. Florian today.