One started this practice of chewing gums long back, our ancestors used tree resins to feel the experience of chewing gums. The purpose of using tree resin like that of Mastic tree was more than that of enjoyment, it helped to clean the teeth, refresh one’s breath, decrease stress, to control hunger, improve concentration and alertness, etc. Most of the chewing gums contain ingredients like gum, resin, fillers, preservatives, softeners, sweeteners and flavorings, etc.
Most of us consider chewing gum as a safe notion since no one sees deep into the side effects or disadvantages in a large proportion. There are a lot of side effects of chewing gum which one does not even know about. However, it will not damage our health if it’s taken in a rare intervals. We decided to touch this topic to spread the awareness about chewing gums. Following are some of disadvantages of chewing gums.
1. Tooth Decay
Chewing gums are made with sugar and fruit flavors to add the sweetened fruit flavor to the gum. Heavy usage of such sugared gum cause tooth decay, gum disease and cavities. This happens because sugar coats the teeth, and can slowly cause damage to the tooth enamel. It is advised that either chewing gums with sugarfree is used or brush your teeth just after chewing gums.
2. Artificial Sweetener Allergies
No one likes the normal chewing gum without any taste. Everyone prefers chewing gum with some sugared flavor. Almost all popular sugar brands use artificial sweeteners to make their products long lasting, sweeter or to achieve a special kind of taste. Some of these artificial sweeteners can cause allergic reaction, especially, Aspartame and Sorbitol. Others can cause irritation or headaches also.
3. Jaw Stress
Detailed studies prove that the habitual use of chewing gums may cause continuous stress on your jaws. If not treated, this stress can lead to the condition called Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TJD), which is manifested with strong facial pain and great discomfort in the back of the neck.
4. Stomach Issues
Continuous chewing of gum can lead to the increased levels of stress or strain to your stomach and intestines. After meals, your stomach must receive a small period of resting time to digest food, but chewing and continuous swallowing of saliva interferes with that resting period. Stomach issues that can appear in these situations are irritation, aches, and aggravated gastritis. In some cases, you can even develop gastric ulcer too.
5. Social Distraction
Modern culture has increased the habit of chewing gums even at the places where it must not be used. In modern culture, many places like schools, colleges, official meetings, conferences, etc. chewing gums is kept in the list of bad behaviour. It is taken as a mark of casual behaviour at some places including schools, official meetings, office premises, etc. It is important that one behaves properly in public and other places without making any discomfort to the other people.
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6. Kidney Problems
Many people have cavities in their teeth and dentists fill these cavities with mercury fillings. Frequent chewing of gums may result into dislodging and release of material in your metabolism. The most common target of mercury is blood, urinary tract, nerves and brain. Hence, it is not advised to chew gums when you have mercury filled cavities in your teeth.
7. Irregular Development of Facial Muscles
Extensive chewing of gums in puberty may lead to the stimulation of jawbone and facial muscles, and creation of larger face. Hence, during puberty, chewing gums is not advised.
8. Increase Your Junk Food Intake
Research has shown that people who chew gums regularly, essentially, eat less nutritious meals in general. People who chewed gums were less likely to eat fruits and instead were more motivated to eat junk foods like potato chips and candy. This is likely because the minty flavor in the gums makes fruits and vegetables taste bitter.
9. Gastrointestinal Problems
Chewing gums cause you to swallow excess air, which can cause abdominal pain and bloating. Also, when you chew gums, you send a signal to your body that it is the time to digest food. But without any food to digest, your stomach end up with an overproduction of stomach acid. This can also cause bloating. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) is a GI disorder characterized by the abdominal pain, cramping, and changes in the bowel habits.
It, hence, seems that there are more of disadvantages than advantages of chewing gums. It needs to be remembered that disadvantages come with over usage of anything. Hence, keep the habit of chewing gums away as far as possible. Chewing gums, occasionally, may not show that serious health hazards as in the case of it’s over dosage. Also, it is better to use sugar free chewing gums rather than the sugar added chewing gums. Hence, always keep in mind the ingredients of the chewing gums before you intake it.