Hello gum chewers, today we’re going to talk about that sticky wad in your mouth. You know that it can freshen your breath, but can it really help shield your smile from cavities?
It really depends on the type of gum. Chewing regular sucrose-based gum can be helpful in removing bits of food from the surface of teeth, but that benefit is negated by the stream of sugar washing over your teeth as you chew.
However, gum with some alternative sweeteners has an added benefit for your pearly whites. Xylitol is a sweetener which not only has fewer calories than traditional sugars, but it also has antimicrobial properties that lower plaque build-up. This means that xylitol inhibits the growth of bacteria that causes cavities.
So if you’re headed out to a restaurant, bring a pack of sugar-free gum with you and pop it in your mouth when your meal is done. Of course, brushing and flossing are the proper practices for your oral health, but when you can’t brush, decide on a sugarless gum with xylitol.
I’m dentist Brian Kruchoski of Alaska Premier Dental Group. We offer family dentistry, cosmetic dentistry, and dental implants. If you have any questions about how to enhance your oral health, or if you would like information about any of our innovative cosmetic dental services such as teeth whitening, veneers, or complete smile transformations, give us a call today at 907-337-0404.
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