Can Chewing Gum Replace the Need to Floss?

Cosmetic Dentist Serving Austin, Bee Cave, Lakeway and Nearby Areas of Texas


A team of researchers from the University of Groningen in Holland has found that chewing sugar-free gum immediately after eating can have profound benefits for oral health. In their recently published study, these researchers document sugar-free chewing gum removing up to 100 million potentially harmful bacteria from the mouth – a number that encouraged the study’s lead author to suggest chewing gum was just as effective as flossing. But before you get rid of your dental floss, there are a few very important things to keep in mind.

During the course of this study, researchers found that chewing gum for periods longer than 10 minutes undid all of the benefits obtained through chewing it in the first place. What’s more, chewing gum was shown to remove bacteria, not plaque and tartar, and plaque and tartar below the gum line are what cause gum disease.

Can chewing sugar-free gum have positive oral health benefits? Of course. But only when chewed for short periods of time and combined with a consistent dental hygiene routine. No matter how many bacteria gum can remove, it should never be seen as a suitable alternative to daily brushing and flossing.

If you are looking for a dentist in the Austin or Round Rock areas of Texas, please contact Contemporary Cosmetic Dentistry today. We offer individualized cosmetic, restorative and general dentistry treatments to help each of our patients obtain optimal oral health and beauty.