It’s safe to say that gum is one of the oldest treats in the history of man. In fact, ancient civilizations all over the world chewed what is considered the first version of gum– sticky tree sap. Since then, the treat has grown even more popular, and with a variety of sweet flavors, it’s easy to see why chewing gum is a favorite among both children and adults. Although it may seem like a harmful candy, sugar-free gum actually has many benefits. So go ahead and chew.
Sugar-Free Gum Vs. Regular Gum
So what makes sugar-free gum so much better than regular gum? Well, the lack of sugar. Sugar-free gum contains artificial sweeteners that have been proven harmless to teeth, unlike gum containing sugar. In fact, some sugar-free gums are sweetened with Xylitol, which has been shown to actually benefit teeth by disabling cavity-causing bacteria from adhering to teeth. Most sugar-free gums are ADA approved, which means they have been independently approved to help your teeth. All you have to do is look for the ADA seal on the packaging.
Increased Saliva Production When Chewing Sugar-Free Gum
Another reason chewing sugar-free gum is so helpful to oral health is that it increases saliva production when you chew. Increased saliva production has many benefits:
- Reduces dryness in the mouth
- Fights bad breath
- Neutralizes acids left behind from food and drinks
- Helps prevent cavities
Better Test Scores
Scientists still aren’t exactly sure why chewing gum increases mental capacity, but it does. In a recent study, gum-chewers were shown to have higher levels of attentiveness, better moods, and better performance on tests than those who did not chew gum. Although this effect is seen in all gum and is not limited to just sugar-free gum, if you want to achieve better oral health and better test scores, you’ll want to skip the sugar.
Contributes to Weight Management
It’s not a myth that chewing sugar-free gum can help manage weight. The act of chewing can actually help you resist the urge to snack throughout the day and can help control cravings. Additionally, chewing sugar-free gum has been shown to decrease daily caloric intake and increase daily calorie burn. This means that not only are you putting less in, but you are getting more out, which is beneficial for weight loss and management.
Sugar Land Dentist to Chew Your Way to A Beautiful Smile
Chewing sugar-free gum should supplement your daily oral health routine, not replace it. If you’d like to know more about the benefits of chewing sugar-free gum and how to keep your smile healthy, contact A Beautiful Smile at Lake Pointe in Sugar Land, Texas to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced dentists.