Can Xylitol Benefit Your Teeth?

xylitol in a bowlXylitol is a natural sweetener that may be able to reduce your risk of cavities, and potentially gum disease. Tooth decay and gingivitis are caused by oral bacteria, and the product can inhibit the growth of those bacteria and prevent them from sticking to your teeth. The process should eventually decrease the overall amount of bacteria that live on your teeth or gums. Products that use Xylitol as the sweetener may be able to reduce the amount of cavities that develop in your teeth. 

Questions About Xylitol

Question: What is it?

Answer: Xylitol is made from the fibrous part of many kinds of plants, though it is generally extracted from corn cobs or trees when used for commercial purposes.  It can prevent cavities by inhibiting oral bacterial growth. Xylitol is also more nutritious than sugar, and is a good choice for diabetics.

Question: How beneficial is the sweetener?

Answer: How often and how long you are exposed to the sweetener affects how efficient it is.  You can talk to your dentist to decide how much you should use. However, xylitol is generally one part of an overall strategy to prevent cavities. In addition to using the product, brush your teeth twice a day, avoid sugary foods and drinks, and drink lots of water.

Question: Is xylitol safe?

Answer: It has been approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.

Question: What kinds of products contain xylitol?

Answer: The sweetener can be found in many products, such as toothpaste, gum, mints, oral mists, and even lollipops. For specific recommendations, speak with your dentist about which products contain beneficial amounts of xylitol.

ABOUT YOUR NORTH RICHLAND HILLS FAMILY DENTIST:

With over 25 years of professional experience, Dr. Steven M. Huffstutler and his caring team proudly provide exceptional preventive, cosmetic, and restorative dental treatment to patients and their families across Dallas/Ft. Worth, including North Richland Hills, Denton, the Mid-cities, Southlake, and all surrounding communities. We also have extensive experience helping patients find relief from painful TMJ disorders (various forms of jaw dysfunction). To schedule an appointment with Dr. Huffstutler, contact our office today by calling 817-577-1444.