By chewing gum, you stimulate saliva production, which reduces plaque, helps clean your mouth of food particles, and neutralizes enamel damaging acids. People who chew sugar-free gum for 20 minutes after eating can prevent tooth decay and even strengthen the enamel on their teeth, according to clinical studies.
Why Saliva is Important
Throughout the day, your mouth is washed by saliva. The majority of saliva is water, but it also contains proteins and minerals needed to keep your teeth healthy and to digest your food. Sugar-free gum helps stimulate the production of saliva, which is important for easy swallowing, chewing, and tasting, protects against decay, supports enamel, prevents bad breath, and fights germs.
Too Little Saliva
Having insufficient saliva production can lead to bad breath and/or dry mouth. The condition is usually temporary. The condition of persistent dry mouth is referred to as xerostomia. Xerostomia causes swelling and pain in your tongue, gums, and mouth tissue. If there is isn't enough saliva is produced to rinse the mouth, bacteria will form, resulting in bad breath. Also, people who suffer from dry mouth are more likely to develop periodontal disease. Periodontal disease is so prevalent in American culture, nearly 50% of all adults have some form of it, so it's no wonder that dentists recommend chewing gum as a regular oral care routine.
Sugarless chewing gum is a fast, easy, and proactive alternative to brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash after meals. However, it should not replace your regular oral health routine such as brushing your teeth twice a day while also flossing. Our dental professionals are here to help with any more questions. You can give us a call today! We always want to help our patients maintain the best oral health care possible.
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