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Is Chewing Gum Bad For You?
Posted on 3/8/2021 by Aron Geelan, DMD
While it is hugely popular in the United States, many wonder if chewing gum is unhealthy or potentially even harmful to your oral health. According to Healthline, a staggering 59% of Americans regularly use chewing gum. Unfortunately, chewing gum can have serious consequences on both your overall and oral health, especially if it is chewed on a frequent basis. Whether the gum contains loads of sugars or artificial sweeteners, regular use should be avoided.
Oral Health Consequences
Despite the common belief that chewing gum can be good for your teeth, the opposite is true. Chewing gum can increase the risk of tooth decay, especially if it contains real sugar. You are essentially drenching your teeth in sugar for an extended period, which allows decay causing bacteria to flourish.
Chewing gum on a regular basis has also been linked to a potential increase in the risk of developing TMJ/TMD. Chewing gum has not been shown to directly cause the condition, but the added fatigue on your jaw muscles from frequent chewing can make it more likely that you will develop this condition. In addition, frequent gum chewing can wear on teeth, resulting in deformities or premature enamel erosion.
General Health Consequences
Many people are surprised to know that chewing gum can have negative consequences on their general health and eating habits. The artificial sweeteners found in most chewing gums can have serious health effects long term as they will be swallowed and absorbed through the mouth during chewing. Chewing gum has also been shown to be linked to an increased consumption of potato chips and other unhealthy snacks, according to WebMD.
If you would like to learn more about the affects of chewing gum or are interested in transitioning to some healthy alternative, our professionals can help. Contact our office for more information today.
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