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Chewing Gum – Demystifying It’s Effects on Your Teeth

Chewing gum has created quite a name for itself in the dental history books of myths and misnomers!

Truth be told, there’s a lot of false advertisement where chewing gum is concerned. At our Lasalle dental facility, we know our patients like to chew on a stick of minty freshness every now and then. We thought this would be a good time to give you a quick guide so we can demystify the effects chewing gum has on your teeth.

Myth #1: Chewing Gum Prevents Cavities

Nice try, but you’ll still need toothpaste and floss in your arsenal of oral care.

There are certain ingredients in gum (xylitol, for instance) that help keep bacteria from sticking to your teeth, but you need to brush at least twice a day (ideally more, because it’s beneficial to brush after every meal). Some brands claim they prevent cavities, and while certain ingredients may prevent bacteria from sticking to your teeth or help your gums combat plaque, the answer still resides in brushing consistently and seeing your dentist regularly.

Myth #2: The Only Difference Between Sugar-Free and Regular Gum is Flavor

Gum that isn’t sugar-free is typically formulated with an immense amount of sugar; that’s what makes it taste good. Unfortunately, this taste-good ingredient invites bad bacteria and helps it stick around for the long haul. The sugar ultimately turns into a glue-like texture that bonds itself to teeth enamel, leading the way for cavities and decay.

If you’re going to go for a pack of gum, opt for the sugar-free kind.

Myth #3: Chewing Gum Releases Mercury from Fillings

Some people believe mercury is released into the mouth when people who have amalgam fillings chew gum. Mercury sounds scary, but it’s actually all around us—from the air we breathe to the food we eat.

Rest assured, studies have found the amount of mercury released from amalgam restorations is well below the danger zone.

Confused about the best way to care for your pearly whites? Let Centre Dentaire lead the way. Our patients come to us from Verdun, Lasalle, Lachine, and surrounding communities in search of brighter whites and beautiful smiles.

We’ll happily answer your questions when you visit us at your initial consultation!