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452 Brunswick Road
Grass Valley, CA 95945
150 Gateway Dr. Ste 110
Lincoln, CA 95648

Does Your Child or Teen Experience Chronic Headaches? Chewing Gum Might be to Blame

Posted on November 13th, 2021

Lincoln & Grass Valley Pediatric dentist, Dr. Kucera at Caring Tree Children’s Dentistry, Inc. tells parents the potential benefits and risks of children and teens chewing gum.Do you remember your first time chewing gum? If you’re like some of us at Caring Tree Children’s Dentistry, Inc., you might even recall hearing that swallowing gum would result in it staying in your stomach for up to seven years! 

There are a lot of myths that still float around these days, so if you hear that chewing gum may be the cause of headaches, you might be inclined to declare that false, too. However, doctors have found a link between the two, and we think it’s an important one to examine because of how many children and teens love to chew gum.

Chompers Need Rest

Before we discuss why chewing gum can cause headaches, we do want to state that plenty of Lincoln & Grass Valley folks benefit from the way it can increase saliva production, which in turn helps fight enamel erosion. But if your child or teen chews gum frequently, their jaw might want a break—specifically their temporomandibular joint, or TMJ.

The constant pressure of chewing can stress the TMJ, and if your child happens to be a nail biter or nighttime teeth grinder, even more trouble can ensue. To help their teeth and jaw relax, suggest they limit their gum chewing to one piece a day—perhaps after lunch to help them reduce acidity in their mouth!

One more thing to note: some doctors believe artificial sweeteners like aspartame may be the cause of headaches. For this reason and because of its enamel strengthening benefits, we recommend Xylitol-gums!

If you have any questions about gum chewing or other habits you’re unsure of when it comes to your child’s dental health, Dr. Kucera would love to answer them for you. Contact us today to schedule a visit!

The content of this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.

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