You may have heard claims that chewing gum for 20 minutes after a meal can help your teeth. Well, it turns out, the rumors are true–at least, numerous studies have shown that chewing sugarless gum for 20 minutes after eating helps your teeth. Here’s why.
When you eat, the acids from the foods make your teeth temporarily extra-sensitive to abrasion. This means that brushing immediately after eating can actually do damage to your teeth. However, leaving food debris, sugars, and acids on your teeth can also be damaging.
Enter chewing gum. Chewing sugar-free gum after eating for 20 minutes helps to stimulate your body’s natural oral defense system: saliva. Salivary glands are activated because of the extra substance in your mouth. It is the saliva, not the gum itself, that works to clean the teeth. It also delivers fortifying substances to the mouth, strengthening tooth enamel. Saliva also works to neutralize harmful acids in the mouth.
Of course, sugared gum also activates salivary glands. However, the sugar present in the gum feeds the bacteria in your mouth you are trying to fight, negating any positive effects of gum chewing. Stick with sugarless gum, and your teeth will thank you. When looking for gum, look for products with the ADA Seal of Acceptance on the label. This will guarantee that you are getting a product that does what it says it does–helps you fight cavities!
For more information on how to take care of your teeth in the Claremont, California area, feel free to call Claremont Smile Design at 909-624-1111. Dr. German Jaquez and our team will be happy to help you, even if it’s just giving you beneficial information. We look forward to hearing from you!