Braces versus Retainers: A Comprehensive Overveiw

Braces versus Retainers: A Comprehensive Overveiw

Chew Your Way to Better Dental Health

by Lonnie Bryant

Chewing gum has a bad reputation: it gets ground into carpets and stuck under desks. However, did you know that regularly chewing sugar-free gum can significantly improve your dental health? Here's how.

Increased Saliva

Chewing gum can increase the amount of saliva your mouth produces. This sounds gross but studies have shown that this has very positive effects, firstly more saliva means more food debris can be washed away, secondly, an increased flow of saliva reduces levels of acidity in the mouth caused by eating. It enables a flow of calcium and phosphate which both help strengthen the teeth. Regularly chewing gum over an extended period of time can lead to an enlargement of your saliva glands which enables them to function more efficiently.

Reduced bacteria 

Xylitol, a sweetener made from tree bark, is often found in sugar-free gums. The good news is that Xylitol is beneficial for oral health as it works to retard the growth of the streptococcus bacteria, one of the primary bacterial agents in tooth decay. 

Xylitol reduces this bacterium's ability to stick to the surface of your teeth and, over an extended period of time it can significantly reduce the levels of harmful bacteria produced in the mouth. 

Chewing gum manufacturers have become aware of the benefits of Xylitol and so you will often find it displayed on the packet as an ingredient. If not, check the ingredients list on the back of your chewing gum to make sure you are taking advantage of the benefits this chemical has to offer. 

Better diet

Chewing gum has long been used as a dieting aid-  instead of reaching for the chocolate, a stick of gum allows you to satisfy your hunger without piling on the pounds. This is also good news for your oral health as the acidity produced in your mouth by high sugar snack foods can be very damaging to your teeth and gums. Taking away the need to snack reduces these negative effects. 

Quit Smoking 

Chewing gum can also be a good way to reduce cravings for cigarettes and is an important part of the process of quitting. Smoking is one of the worst things you can for your health generally and particularly your oral hygiene. Cutting down by chewing gum is a great first step towards quitting altogether. 

Chewing gum is inexpensive and easily available - a great resource for improving oral hygiene! If you have any concerns about how best to maintain your oral health, you should book an appointment with your dentist.


About Me

Braces versus Retainers: A Comprehensive Overveiw

There are more than two ways to straighten a smile, and in this blog, I plan to discuss them all. I plan to look at the differences between braces and retainers and explain why sometimes you may need them both. I look at the differences in cost, time commitment and efficacy. Personally, I have had a bit of experience with this subject – I had braces as a young teen, and I had a permanent retainer. In this blog, I discuss what I have learned, and I present all kinds of new information on the topic. Whether you are trying to make decisions for yourself or your child. I hope you find this information useful.