There are many steps you need to take to maintain the health of your mouth, such as brushing your teeth twice a day, flossing them once a day, and visiting the dentist every six months. However, there are additional steps you can take that further improve your oral health, such as rinsing with a mouthwash, avoiding sweet foods, and chewing sugar-free gum after meals. Keep reading to learn about how sugar-free gum helps to keep your mouth healthy.
After you eat a meal, the plaque bacteria that collect on your teeth process the sugars of your food into acids. These acids eat away at the enamel surrounding and protecting your teeth, eventually causing decay. However, your body has saliva as a natural defense against cavities. Saliva can neutralize these harmful acids, clean food away from your mouth, and bring in minerals that strengthen tooth structure.
This is how sugar-free gum helps to improve your oral health. When chewing gum after meals, your mouth produces more of the saliva that protects teeth from decay-causing acids. Another way sugar-free gum protects your oral health is with xylitol. This natural sweetener is often added to sugar-free gum and is known for reducing bacteria growth and acid production. Xylitol can even inhibit the creation of the substance that makes bacteria stick to teeth. If you chew sugar-free gum for 20 minutes after a meal, then you are giving your teeth their best chance against cavities.