Is Chewing Gum better than Flossing?

 When you have cosmetic dentistry or restorative dentistry work completed it is essential to maintain good oral hygiene. Flossing has been preached for years and now recent research article states that gum chewing may be better than flossing. This article is in the Journal Plos One, and states that gum chewing may be as beneficial as flossing.  It states that gum analyzed after chewing had 100 million bacteria per piece, more or less the same as flossing.  

Whereas, this study may express some benefits of chewing gum, I personally feel there are several other factors to consider:

1) Chewing gum will not clean in between the teeth and under the gumline, hence gum disease can progress

2) Excessive wear on teeth: overzeaous chewing can cause premature wear

3) Warning to those with a predisposition to TMJ or have TMJ issues, chewing gum regularly is not recommended

This article shows that there are some benefits to chewing gum and hopefully the future will develop a gum that can inhibit gum disease.  In the meantime, other methods, such as the Waterpik, in lieu of flossing are showing significant promise.  At this point, do not throw out the floss.

If you have questions about Houston Cosmetic Dentist or Houston TMJ, please feel free to contact our office, Ronald W. Konig DDS, FAGD, LVIF, 713-668-2289

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