Dental Benefits of Xylitol-Art of Cosmetic Dentistry Buckhead

Xylitol has been studied extensively in Finland for its role in reducing the occurrence of cavities. In 1970, a four day study was conducted involving candies and sweet rolls sweetened with xylitol. At the end of the four day study the participants had experienced the reduction of plaque mass by 50%. Xylitol works three ways to reduce cavities. First, it depletes the bacteria’s energy. Secondly, it blocks the bacteria from communicating with the other bacteria which prevents the formation of biofilm. Finally, it keeps the pH elevated so that calcium and phosphate in the saliva can remineralize any areas of demineralization.
Xylitol has also proven to be especially beneficial to elderly patients in nursing homes. Oral home care is frequently poor in these settings due to the lack of ability of the patient and the lack of time of the staff. By introducing xylitol into the menu the patients have experienced a significant decrease in both plaque and cavities.
Xylitol can be purchased at natural food stores to incorporate into your daily routine. As little as 1Tablespoon daily for 6 months can reduce cavities by 42-100%. If the method of delivery is a xylitol chewing gum it needs to be 100% xylitol gum and it would require 5 exposures per day. While the ADA hasn’t supported the use of xylitol it is based on their lack of research, not evidence that discredits its use.