How often do you reach for a stick of gum? With so many types of gum on the market advertising fresher breath and a whiter smile, it’s easy to think chewing gum could be benefiting your teeth. However, that is not always the case.
What chewing gum should I avoid?
Many brands of gum on the market contain sugar. Chewing on sugar will increase your chances of developing cavities because it sticks to your teeth and produces acids in your mouth that will erode enamel. At the Dental Care Center, we recommend straying from any gum that contains sugar.
How else can chewing gum be bad for my teeth?
Chewing on gum regularly can also lead to an imbalance in your jaw muscles, especially if you tend to favor chewing on one side rather than the other. In more severe cases, you can begin to develop TMJ, or temporomandibular joint disorder, a painful condition that can result from excessive chewing.
When chewing gum is best for my teeth?
Chewing on sugar-free gum in moderation can be very good for your teeth. Chewing can stimulate saliva production, which helps wash away and neutralize acids and bacteria lingering on your teeth as well as any leftover food particles. The next time you’re shopping for chewing gum, look for the American Dental Association Official Seal on the packaging. This is an indicator of a sugar-free gum that is safe and healthy for your teeth.
Can chewing gum replace brushing in between meals?
No! Chewing gum cannot and should not replace regular brushing and flossing.
Change your chewing habits: know what type of gum you’re chewing and whether it’s helping or hurting your smile! Make an appointment with us today for more information on keeping your teeth healthy.