How many times have you caught yourself popping in a piece of gum, whether unconsciously or to mask the odor associated with your food or beverage choices? While many people choose sugar free gum or American Dental Association (ADA) approved gum, there are still inherent risks associated with this habit. Some gum helps promote dental health by means of xylitol, but truly, chewing gum can be a detrimental habit. Your local Smithville dentist at Smithville Family Dentistry is here to help you understand how chewing gum can be hiding (or creating) dental problems.

Halitosis, more commonly referred to as bad breath, is a dental problem that affects many people. While some bad breath stems from the food and drink choices that we make on a daily basis, for others, bad breath is due to dental caries, more commonly known as cavities. When dental caries are left untreated, the bacteria will begin to multiply and cause tooth decay. This decay can be very stinky, so popping in a piece of gum can mask the stench.

Individuals that have had a lot of dental work completed; crowns, fillings, braces, dentures, dental implants, etc. should be wary of chewing gum. The tacky nature of gum can cause damage to dental work, which can in turn cause pain. Chewing gum may also adhere to braces and other hardware causing a lot of problems that are not easily repaired. For those people who have no dental work but obsessively chew gum, you could be on your way to developing Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Syndrome.

Chewing gum should never take the place of preventative dental care. Contact your local Smithville Dentist at Smithville Family Dentistry to schedule an appointment. Through regular visits we can help ensure that your oral health stays at its peak!