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Study Finds Sugarless Gum May Help Reduce Cavities

Experts say sugar-free gum could become a perfect ally for addressing children's oral health challenges.

Study Finds Sugarless Gum May Help Reduce Cavities
Despite the progress made in recent years, tooth decay remains the most common chronic condition in many countries and the most prevalent among children. But a new study, conducted by the School of Dentistry, Oral and Craniofacial Science at King's College London and supported by the Wrigley Oral Healthcare Program - and international program - has revealed the positive impact sugar-free gum can have on oral health.

The data reviewed found evidence that chewing sugarless gum could reduce the incidence of caries because it helps neutralize plaque acids by stimulating saliva and maintaining the mineralization of tooth enamel. Specifically, according to the study, people who regularly chewed sugarless gum developed 28% fewer cavities than those who did not.

The study consisted of a systematic review to examine the difference in tooth decay levels in adults and children who chew sugar-free gum compared to those who do not chew sugar-free gum or use alternatives such as lozenges, candies, rinses, or measures that do not require chewing.
According to Dr. Mike Dodds, a senior oral health scientist at Wrigley's Oral Health Programme, "this new study from King's College London reinforces the critical role that sugar-free gum can play in improving oral health in people around the world. As our lifestyles and eating behaviors evolve, we must look beyond brushing to protect our teeth and mouth with additional measures to the existing oral care routine.

Dodds says, "Research continues to show us the relationship between oral health and overall well-being. This study is a reminder of the role sugar-free gum can play in helping to improve dental health in both developed and developing countries. It also highlights the feasibility of using sugar-free gum as a possible effective public health measure.