Chewing sugar-free gum after meals, snacks and acidic drinks can help keep your teeth in tip-top condition. While you may brush your teeth religiously twice a day, gum can help you ward off problems between brushings. Chewing gum gives you a natural boost in your saliva. This gives you a quick and easy way of keeping your teeth clean and free from substances that may cause damage, such as the acids and sugars in the things you eat and drink during the day.

While you may already realise that sugar-free gum is the way to go and that you shouldn't chew standard gums that contain sugar that damages your teeth, you may not be aware that some sugar-free gums are better for your teeth than others. Typically, this is all about the flavour of a gum and the ingredients that give it flavor. How can you tell the difference between a good sugar-free gum and a bad one?

Good Sugar-free Gum Flavours


Typically, a sugar-free gum that contains a traditional mint is the best dental option. These gums usually contain natural mint flavourings and don't require acids like citric, malic or ascorbic acid to give them their taste. For example, you may want to stick to using gums with a regular mint, peppermint or spearmint flavour. If you don't like the taste of mint, more exotic sugar-free flavours such as chocolate, butterscotch or spices such as cinnamon may be an alternative option.

Bad Sugar-Free Gum Flavours

To be on the safe side, it may be better to avoid chewing sugar-free gums that have fruit flavours. Typically, a fruity taste is created by using one or more acidic substances. This may also be the case with some mixed-flavour gums, such as gums with a fruity mint taste. The mint part of the gum may be fine; the fruit part may not be. It's also a good idea to avoid sour chewing gums. Again, they may be manufactured with acids to create their sour taste.

If you aren't sure how good or bad a sugar-free gum is for your teeth, look at the list of ingredients on the pack. Ideally, you should stick to gums that don't have any acids in them since acids wear away the enamel on your teeth. If you still aren't sure, your dentist will also be able to give you advice on the best type of gum to chew to keep your teeth healthy without causing erosion problems.