Chewing Gum and Orthodontic Treatments
Chewing gum has never been good friends with dentistry or orthodontics. The same happens with candy in general. It wasn’t until recently that these types of snacks were popularized unsugared.
And we all know sugar is the true enemy of your teeth. You probably have heard somewhere that sugar can damage the tooth enamel and contribute to oral bacteria issues or gum disease. And yes, it’s all true; you should take it easy with your sugar consumption.
But it is also imperative to say that this fact doesn’t mean you can’t ever eat sugar, candy, or gum. People often see things as black or white, and this is a gray matter. Science has shown that we, humans, need a bit of every food group and sugar is one of them.
The thing is, we are used to abusing sugar daily. Candies and chewing gum used to have much more sugar than we need daily. That’s why specialists recommend avoiding them in general.
Nowadays, we have alternatives, healthy alternatives. Sugar-free gum and candies are becoming more and more popular by the day. People are now more aware of the consequences of snacking too much.
The situation with gum used to be twice as complicated as with candy. Chewing gum also constitutes a problem due to its texture, hard and sticky. For orthodontic patients with metal braces or invisible aligners, chewing gum is risky.
Can You Eat Gum With Braces?
Gum can get stuck between your archwires and bend them. In some cases, this can affect your treatment, but it won’t be necessary to set a new appointment before your next check-up.
Nowadays, archwires are often made of a more flexible metal that can take the chewing of gum without bending. We would still recommend avoiding gum in general since it can be hard to be sure about the materials of your archwires.
Chewing gum can also cause detached brackets, which is obviously not good for your orthodontic treatment.
All of these are problems with easy solutions. However, it’s best for you if you avoid chewing gum all the time and have a different snack instead.
What Kind of Gum Is Good for Teeth?
When unsugared candy was invented, the world changed its curse. Sugar-free gum is a much healthier alternative, and sometimes it is even recommended by dentists and orthodontists because chewing exercise can be helpful in certain cases and increases saliva production.
If we leave patients with braces apart, chewing gum does not suppose a threat to your teeth except for the sugar it contains.
As we all know, sugar can damage the tooth enamel, which is the protective coat of your teeth. If the tooth enamel is weak, you can easily be at risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Eating sugar constantly hurts your oral health more than you can imagine. Chewing gum covers your teeth with sugar, and that’s how it damages your enamel.
Can You Chew Gum With Invisalign?
This question has two answers. One of the many benefits of starting orthodontic treatment with clear aligners is that you get to eat almost everything you want since your teeth can be freed in a matter of minutes.
Having the opportunity to take off your orthodontic appliances whenever you want to eat is amazing. But let’s not forget the immense importance of wearing your Invisalign aligners for as much as possible.
You literally should take them off only for eating and brushing your teeth. So, if you want to chew gum, you have to take off your aligners, and this means you can only enjoy gum for a few minutes a day.
If you chew gum with Invisalign in your mouth, you will probably have a hard time when the gum gets attached to the appliance. Remember eating with your aligners on can break your dental molds.
What if Gum Sticks to My Brackets?
This is more common than you think. People usually believe “this won’t happen to me,” and of course, it happens to them too. Traditional braces and gum are better when not mixed.
You can first brush the affected area with your usual tools for oral hygiene: toothpaste and a toothbrush. Interdental brushes for braces are very useful as well since you can reach difficult parts with them.
The gum might not come out entirely, but you should keep trying, and it will surely come out in a day or two maximum. Call your orthodontist’s office if you can’t get rid of it.
Doubts About How to Take Care of Your Braces?
Set an appointment with your team of specialized orthodontists in Sacramento, California. Your teeth will thank you.