The Chewing Habit: 3 Tooth-Friendly Gums To Consider

Many people like to chew on a piece of gum to pass time or to relax. But, several of the commercially-sold gums contains questionable ingredients, like processed sugar, that are associated with dental ailments like cavities. The following are 3 gums that are safe for your teeth, which is why you should keep that chewing habit alive.

The Importance of Chewing

Studies have shown that chewing gum for at least 20 minutes after every meal prevents tooth decay. But, you have to make sure that you are chewing sugarless gum or gum with sugars that do not lead to dental ailments.

The reason that chewing on a piece of gum (or a gum-like item) is helpful is because it helps activate your salivary glands, producing more saliva. Saliva contains powerful enzymes that help kill oral pathogens attempting to cause dental harm. Salivation also helps transport things like calcium or magnesium to your teeth, which should help remineralize your enamel. This should make your teeth stronger and ready to repel bacterial attacks.

1. Sugarless Gum Option

Removing the type of sugars that feed oral pathogens is the best thing you can do. And there are a few sweeteners that bacteria cannot feed on, like the following:

  • Xylitol
  • Sorbitol
  • Mannitol
  • Erythritol 

Look for gums that contain the sweeteners above, as some gum companies use these in their products to replace processed sugar. 

2. The Tree Resin Gum

The next type of gum that you should consider is the resin gum, which is made from the sun-dried sap of the Mastic tree that mostly grows in Greece or Middle Eastern countries. You should consider chewing on this sap because it contains mastic oil, which is highly antibacterial.

You can use mastic gum to freshen your breath and kill some of the bacteria in your mouth. You can purchase mastic gum from your local health food store or online.

3. The Tropical and Rubbery Gum

A third type of gum that you can consider is usually referred to as chicle, which is a word that derived from the indigenous peoples of Southern America. Chicle is another type of sap from the Chico Zapote tree that contains several proteins and lipids that are released when you start to chew on the gum. Lipids, for one, help your body transport vital vitamins and minerals all around your body to your teeth and gums.

You can purchase natural chicle from your local health food store or online.

Remember that these gums are not meant to replace your dentist's advice nor meant to be cures. These gums are meant to help keep your teeth healthy and are more of a preventative measure. Be sure to tell your dentist about adding these types of gums to your diet so that he or she can help monitor your oral reaction.

For professional help, contact a dentist such as Marc E. Segal, D.D.S.