We at your Dentist Epping know that, much as you’d like to, you can’t always clean your teeth after a meal. In that situation, it’s handy to chew some sugar-free gum because doing that helps protect your teeth and gums.
Chewing gum makes you produce more saliva in your mouth, and because sugar-free gum contains no sugar, it does not damage your teeth. The extra saliva produced helps protect your teeth from the acid produced by the bacteria in the plaque on your teeth and the acids in your food and drink.
It’s really good to counter that extra acid as it dissolves some of the minerals in the hard, outer coating on your teeth, the enamel, thereby weakening it. After you’ve eaten, it’s good to chew sugar-free gum for about 20 minutes. The extra saliva produced speeds up the replacement of the lost minerals to roughly an hour and returns the pH (a measure of the acid level inside your mouth) to safe levels!
If you suffer from a dry mouth or bad breath, you might wonder if the extra saliva produced by chewing sugar-free gum would help them. And your Dentist Epping is happy to tell you that it might. It’s worth a try.
What makes the sugar-free gum taste sweet is xylitol, a natural sweetener, which is often made from birch bark though it also occurs in some fruits and vegetables.
Xylitol has an added benefit in that it also seems to make it harder for plaque bacteria to stick to your teeth!
Sugar-free gum may not be suitable for everyone to use, though.
Vegetarians may need to look for brands that use non-animal glycerine. And children younger than seven may find it difficult to use. It is not wise to use it if you have braces. If you have a denture, you need to test it carefully in case it sticks to the denture’s teeth or palate.
Using sugar-free gum does not get you out of cleaning your teeth! The normal routine of brushing twice daily with fluoride toothpaste and flossing between your teeth still applies!!
Please also consider the extra chewing can over time add to fragility of teeth through bruxism, hyper-parafunction or hyper use of chewing forces.
The fact that this gum is sugar-free does not mean it can be discarded anywhere – it will still cause a mess. So, your Dentist Epping urges you to be responsible: wrap it in paper and pop it in a bin.
To find out more, please click the link for an appointment with us: