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4 Oral Health Benefits Smokers Receive From Chewing Gum

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A smoker may be more likely to encounter oral health issues, such as periodontal disease. Thus, in addition to regular brushing and flossing,  a smoker should employ adjunct measures, such as chewing gum, to protect his or her dental health. Here are a few benefits that a smoker may receive by regularly chewing sugarless gum:

Brighter Teeth

Some gum includes tooth whitening ingredients, such as titanium oxide and sodium bicarbonate, which help polish stains from the teeth due to their slight abrasiveness. This is important for smokers because tobacco pigments can cause the teeth to take on a brown or yellow appearance.

Better Breath

Many smokers experience halitosis due to the dry mouth that results from smoking. A dry environment in the oral cavity can incite an increase in anaerobic bacteria counts. These bacteria release volatile sulfur compounds that cause bad breath.

Chewing gum helps promote the production of saliva to help lessen dry mouth. In addition, the saliva helps wash away bacteria and plaque that are associated with halitosis.

Less Oral Bacteria

Oral bacteria can cause multiple dental health issues. As bacteria feed on particles of food that are left in the mouth, they release acid that demineralizes the smoker's tooth enamel and causes decay. 

Gum, due to its sticky nature, adheres to particles of food to pull them away from the teeth and gums. This can help remove the food supply of oral bacteria. In addition, some varieties of gum contain xylitol, which is a natural sweetener that has antibacterial properties. Smokers can also benefit by choosing gum that has been flavored with cinnamon, which has been shown to also have antimicrobial effects.

Better Gum Health

Smokers are more susceptible to periodontal disease and other gum problems. Much of this is due to the inflammation incited by the gums' exposure to tobacco. In addition, smoking impairs proper blood circulation to the gums and decreases the amount of oxygen present in the blood.

Gum tissue is also irritated by acid in the mouth. Without being regularly washed away or diluted by large amounts of saliva, irritating acid can remain in the mouth. The production of saliva that is encouraged as a smoker chews gum can help eliminate some of the causes of gum inflammation.

If you are smoker, you can learn more ways to protect your oral health by consulting with a dentist from a company like Health Centered Dentistry.