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Could Gum-chewing Cause Wrinkles; Shorten Filler Lifespan?

Posted: March 10, 2010

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Schlessinger says he’s observed this with his patients, as well. “The act of chewing gum can dislodge the fillers earlier,” he says. “It actually pushes them out of the area. They dissipate a lot quicker in gum-chewers, in my opinion.”

But before you spit out that gum, consider this. An October 2009 study in Germany discovered that chewing gum had a significant and positive effect on concentration performance. (The test was performed on two classes of relatively wrinkle-free third-graders.) Additional research shows chewing gum decreases stress (in a study sponsored by Wrigley), increases alertness, and helps lessen the severity of nicotine withdrawal symptoms.

Jane Soxman, DDS, a board-certified pediatric dentist from Allison Park, Pennsylvania, says there are many dental benefits to chewing gum, as well (she recommends gum with the sugar substitute xylitol). “It stimulates salivary flow, assisting with the removal of food residues from the teeth,” she says. “It neutralizes the acid in your mouth. And if you have an early, early cavity, it helps to remineralize the area and reduce the advancement of tooth decay.”

The gum-wrinkle connection is a new one on her, though. “I know cigarette smoking creates wrinkles above the upper lip with the pursing of the lips, but I’ve never heard of gum causing wrinkles,” she says.

Repetition is the culprit, says Schlessinger. “We’re not talking about the occasional gum chewer,” he says. “We’re talking about  people who have a habit of chewing gum and are rarely, if ever, seen without a piece of gum in their mouths.”