Can Gum Help Keep Your Mouth Healthy?

Oct2 gumDid you know that just by chewing a little piece of the right kind of gum you can:

  • Prevent tooth decay
  • Starve bacteria
  • Prevent oral inflammation
  • Reduce your risk for gum disease

It may sound too good to be true, but one important ingredient can make all the difference: Xylitol.

Xylitol is not just another unhealthy artificial sweetener. Instead, it’s a naturally occurring sugar alcohol that does far more than keep glycemic levels healthy and low. Of course it does that too without compromising taste or sweetness, but it can also make a major difference in your oral health.

How Xylitol Gum Protects Your Mouth

One of the most common causes of oral health problems is a bacteria called Streptococcus mutans — the bacteria mostly responsible for plaque. This bacteria feeds on sugars and carbohydrates that linger in your mouth. Since Xylitol does not produce the carbohydrates the plaque needs to live, the bacteria injests Xylitol, fills with a substance that offers no nutrition, and starves. That means your oral oral bacteria levels drop — sometimes by up to 75%!

Other Benefits of Xylitol Gum

Killing bacteria is exciting enough, but chewing a piece of Xylitol gum can do even more:

  • Chewing Xylitol gum increases saliva production which protects your teeth and remineralizes them with naturally occurring calcium and phosphate.
  • Acidity in your mouth can lead to enamel erosion. Xylitol in gum or mints can reduce the acidity of your saliva.
  • Xylitol can help your body better absorb calcium which we all know can strengthen your teeth.

To learn more about how chewing Xylitol can benefit your oral health, or for suggestions about which Xylitol products to use, give our Austin dental office a call today.

Welcoming patients from Austin, Westlake, and Cedar Park.

6 Different Ways to Use Dental Floss

Oct - floss hacksEveryone has some dental floss. We are especially sure of that considering we give you a roll at every visit to my dental practice in Austin! And if you are anything like us, you probably have a few extra rolls lying around the house. Why not tuck one in your purse? Store one in your glove compartment? Or drop one in your toolbox? We aren’t suggesting that you floss your teeth all over the house (though you could), but since it’s useful for so many things other than your teeth because of its incredible flexibility and strength, it’s worth keeping it handy. Here are a few of our favorite ways to use floss besides on your teeth:

  • Cut delicate foods: Floss is thin and strong and works to slice delicate cheeses, rolls of cookie dough, or other foods that might squish when a knife is pushed into them.
  • Sew on a lost button: When your sewing kit isn’t nearby, floss works as super strong thread.
  • Bundle kindling to light a fire: Because waxed floss burns like the wick of a candle, it is the perfect firestarter. Wrap it on a pinecone, tie up kindling, or twist it around a newspaper roll and light it like a candle. Your fire will be burning bright in no time.
  • Stop an annoying drip: Have you ever spend a sleepless night because of a dripping faucet? Tie some sanitary floss around the spigot to direct the droplets down the string and into the drain. No more dripping!
  • Decorate your house: Use floss instead of wire to hang pictures to protect your wall. String a popcorn garland without worry of germs. Repair a wind chime. And tie up drooping plants.
  • Make an emergency hair tie: A bad hair moment can strike at anytime. Grab a piece of floss and tame your unruly tresses.

Do you have any awesome floss hacks? Share them with us at your next appointment. We all love helpful hints. Call my Austin dental office and schedule a visit!

Welcoming patients from Austin, Westlake, and Cedar Park.

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