Bad breath or halitosis is usually caused by the food you eat, tobacco products, poor oral hygiene, dry mouth, infections, or certain medications. Usually, when we notice that we have bad breath, we often go for the quick fix, which includes:
- using a mouth spray
- chewing a minty flavored gum
- gargling with mouthwash
However, these are only temporary fixes. They will not get rid of your bad breath but will only temporarily mask it. Of the quick fixes mentioned, chewing gum should be avoided at all costs. Not only will it not fix your bad breath, it is also bad for your teeth and your health.
Here are some of the reasons why chewing gum is bad for you:
- Chewing gum can cause gastrointestinal problems
When you chew gum, you swallow excess air. This can lead to bloating and abdominal discomfort. Chewing gum also sends a signal to your stomach that food is about to come down. This activates enzymes and acids in your stomach but no food ever comes down. This will result in poor digestive function.
- The sugar in your gum can cause tooth decay
Your chewing gum can be full of sugar which will lead to tooth decay. And even if your chewing gum is sugar-free, it could be filled with acidic flavors and preservatives that will cause dental erosion.
- Your chewing gum may contain titanium dioxide
Some chewing gums contain titanium dioxide. This is most common in chewing gums that claim to whiten your teeth. Titanium dioxide has been linked to autoimmune disorders, Crohn’s disease, cancer, and asthma.
- Your chewing gum may contain BHT or butylated hydroxytoluene
BHT is a toxic preservative that is found in most chewing gums. It has been linked to liver damage, kidney failure, cancer, and hyperactivity in children.
- Your chewing gum may contain aspartame
This is an artificial sweetener that is found in most sugar-free gum. Aspartame has been linked to cancer, birth defects, and brain tumors.