Xylitol Gum For Your Teeth

Curb that sweet tooth of yours with this tooth-friendly ingredient, and your teeth will thank you later! 

Sweetened gum can seem like an easy choice when you’re craving sugar. Some people find themselves reaching for a pack of gum too often just out of sheer habit. While chewing gum itself isn’t bad for you, the sugar in it definitely is. 

A mouth laden with sugar is the bacteria’s happy place. The sugar in chewing gums acts as food for the bacteria in the plaque on your teeth, consequently leading to tooth damage and decay. We know that beating the habit of chewing gum is no easy feat, so we recommend switching to a healthier alternative that’s low in both sugar and calories: Xylitol gum. It will give you a sweet chewing experience that you long for without having to worry about cavities! 


Get the best of both worlds with Xylitol

While Xylitol is almost as sweet as sugar, it only contributes to half the number of calories as you get from sugar. It contains only 2.4 calories per grams as opposed to sugar’s 4 calories per gram. Something that tastes like sugar but with 40% less calories?  Enjoy the sweetness without the guilt.  It’s a total win-win! 


Xylitol; the sweetener with a twist

Xylitol is a natural sugar found in fruits (such as berries) and vegetables and artificially extracted from plants rich in xylans, such as birch and beechwood. 

It is a sugar alcohol consisting of a 5-carbon chain, and this carbon structure renders xylitol non-fermentable by oral bacteria. Oral bacteria like Streptococcus mutans need a 6-carbon chain to metabolize and multiply. Here’s the fun part: As Xylitol is sweet in taste, it lures the bacteria into feeding on it. But since it is non-digestible by them, they fail to produce the polysaccharide chains needed for them to stick together and to the tooth surface. This drastically compromises the adhesion ability of the bacteria to oral tissues, consequently reducing the incidence of dental caries. 


What are the dental benefits of Xylitol?

Prevention is always better than cure. Why allow the disease to progress when you can take measures to prevent it from manifesting in the first place? Xylitol is a game changer in the field of preventive dentistry as it’s packed with numerous benefits. It drastically reduces the incidence of dental caries by the following mechanisms:


1) Increasing the salivary flow

Chewing xylitol gum stimulates the production and secretion of saliva in your mouth. An enhanced salivary flow rate works wonders for preventing cavities by efficiently rinsing away food debris and bacteria from tooth surfaces and promoting the remineralization of tooth enamel. 

Studies have shown that chewing xylitol gum can reverse the damage of an initial caries attack with the help of stimulated saliva as it contains a higher concentration of calcium, phosphorus, and hydroxide ions constituting the crystal lattice structure of enamel than unstimulated saliva. Remineralization takes place twice as fast with this wonder gum! 

This is especially helpful for people suffering from xerostomia as it promotes salivary flow while also protecting from rampact decay. 


2) Increasing the oral pH

The oral bacteria thrive in an acidic environment. Your tooth enamel is too precious to be left at the mercy of acid-producing bacteria that inhabit the plaque on tooth surfaces. Xylitol functions to keep the oral pH at a neutral level since it doesn’t break down in the same way that sugar does. As Xylitol is practically non-fermentable by oral bacteria, it reduces the acid production potential of these bacteria adhering to your tooth surfaces. It thus acts as an effective neutralization solution to combat the acidity that notoriously erodes your tooth enamel and makes your teeth more susceptible to decay and sensitivity.


3) Reducing the cariogenic and periodontopathic bacterial load

Xylitol is capable of reducing the levels of mutans streptococci and Helicobacter pylori present in your saliva and plaque by disrupting their energy production processes and causing cell death. Additionally, it hampers the ability of the bacteria to adhere to the tooth surface as plaque. 

How Much Do You Need?

Mind you, it does take a fair amount of xylitol to cut down on the population of S.mutans. The optimum dose of xylitol for the prevention of caries is 6-10 grams per day. That translates to chewing about 3-5 pieces of xylitol gum every day. Studies have shown that chewing xylitol gum for around three weeks brings about a long-term and short-term reduction in the levels of S.mutans in both the saliva and plaque. 


Side Effects

Xylitol gum is safe as long as you don’t take too many.

In doses greater than 15 grams a day can cause gastrointestinal issues such as bloating, nausea, diarrhea, and constipation. 

CAUTION: While Xylitol can safely be consumed by members of the human race, it isn’t safe at all for dogs. Be sure to keep it as far away as possible from the man’s best friend as it metabolizes xylitol differently. At high doses, it can be very harmful for them as they might experience dangerously low blood sugar levels and even liver damage.

The Bottom Line

Xylitol is a safe sugar alternative packed with a ton of benefits for your oral health. It reduces the incidence of caries by decreasing plaque buildup around your teeth and gums. It can also reverse mild tooth decay by enhancing the remineralization process.

If you’re looking for a healthier sweet alternative to tame that sweet tooth, look no further because this a great sugar alternative!


The FAQ Section:


What is the best time to chew Xylitol gum

Chewing Xylitol gum after mealtimes for 20 minutes is recommended. 

How does enamel remineralization occur by chewing Xylitol gum?

Chewing Xylitol gum increases the salivary flow rate and the oral pH. As you know, your saliva is rich in calcium and phosphate. An increased amount of saliva paired with an alkaline oral environment creates a combination ideal for promoting enamel remineralization. 

Is Xylitol safe for diabetics?

Absolutely! Xylitol does not require insulin to be metabolized so it’s great for diabetics. It also has a low glycemic index of only 7, as compared to regular sugar’s which is 60-70, meaning that it doesn’t cause blood glucose or insulin spikes.



Nayak, P. A., Nayak, U. A., & Khandelwal, V. (2014). The effect of xylitol on dental caries and oral flora. Clinical, cosmetic and investigational dentistry, 6, 89–94. https://doi.org/10.2147/CCIDE.S55761

Ribelles Llop, M., Guinot Jimeno, F., Mayné Acién, R., & Bellet Dalmau, L. J. (2010). Effects of xylitol chewing gum on salivary flow rate, pH, buffering capacity and presence of Streptococcus mutans in saliva. European journal of paediatric dentistry, 11(1), 9–14.