Chewing gum is something like an addiction that you find both in adults and children alike. However once you discover you are expecting a baby, a simple habit like regularly chewing gum also becomes a question mark. You begin getting apprehensive about whether this will harm your baby or cause any adverse effect on your pregnancy. On the whole, it is better to steer clear of chewing gum, but how unsafe or safe it is during pregnancy needs to be explained more clearly. Let’s delve deeper into what exactly chewing gum is and how safe it is during this sensitive period.
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- What Does Chewing Gum Contain?
- Benefits Of Chewing Gum During Pregnancy
- Negative Effects Of Chewing Gum During Pregnancy
- Precautions To Be Adhered While Chewing Gum During Pregnancy
- When To Totally Avoid Chewing Gum During Pregnancy?
What Does Chewing Gum Contain?
Chewing gum is packed with synthetic and chemical ingredients. This includes artificial flavors, colors, GMO corn syrup and chemical sweeteners. But they may not actually harm your baby in any way if chewed in moderation.
Benefits Of Chewing Gum During Pregnancy
- Helps to curb food cravings: Chewing gums are an excellent alternative for women who are weight conscious. Chewing gums help to cut down the food cravings that you often experience while you are carrying
- Helps to avert nausea: Gum contains traces of Stevia that has been found to avert nausea, which is beyond argument one of the dreaded woes of pregnancy that every women experiences some time or the other during this period
- Helps provide relief from acid reflux: Chewing gum after a meal has been found to be quite effective in providing considerable relief from heart burn symptoms that moms-to-be experience during their pregnancy period. This is because chewing gum triggers production of more saliva that contains traces of “acid neutralizing bicarbonate” which helps in neutralizing the acid content in your tummy
Negative Effects Of Chewing Gum During Pregnancy
- Most gums have sweetened flavors that can cause dental problems which can turn out to be really bothersome during pregnancy period
- The artificial sweetener Sorbitol present in gums induces bloating as it gets absorbed in your gut. This will hinder normal growth and development of your fetus
- Chewing gums also contain traces of Sucralose that has been found to cause diabetic adverse effects
- It has been proved that chewing gum regularly results in wearing down of the cartilages that play the role of a shock absorber for your jaws. And if they become damaged, it can trigger unwanted pain and discomfort during pregnancy period
- If you happen to be a victim of PKU, chewing gums that contain aspartame can cause harm to the baby growing inside you
- Even nicotine gum that pregnant moms chew in order to get rid of their smoking habit is quite harmful for the fetus. The addictive traces present in these gums gets into your baby’s blood and can trigger high levels of blood pressure and heart issues as they grow up
Precautions To Be Adhered While Chewing Gum During Pregnancy
Although chewing gum is not harmful for you or the baby growing within you, it would be advisable to take a few precautions while chewing gum.They are
- Make sure you floss each time after you chew gum
- It would be better to abstain yourself from chewing gum totally around one month before your due date to ensure a healthy baby
- Make sure you read labels carefully before choosing gum. Some chewing gums have traces of Xylitol that is not advised during pregnancy phase
- Never get careless while chewing gum because just one moment of carelessness can cause you to swallow this gum that can really spell disaster inside your tummy while carrying
- It is advised to pick out unsweetened chewing gum as sweetened gum can trigger gestational diabetes
- Steer clear of menthol and mint flavored chewing gums as they trigger your stomach to produce excessive digestive juices that is not advisable during this period
- Never chew too much gum as chewing gum excessively can turn out to be quite risky during your pregnancy period
- Never try nicotine chewing gums if you have a history of any kind of liver, heart or kidney complications
- Brush your teeth often if you have the habit of chewing gum as this can lead to dental cavities that become a real pain during this period
- And last but not the least, the best course would be to consult your doctor and ensure whether chewing gum is safe during this period for you or not
When To Totally Avoid Chewing Gum During Pregnancy?
If you suffer from any of the following medical conditions during your pregnancy, make sure you totally avoid consuming chewing gum specially the ones that contain artificial sweeteners:
- Gestational Diabetes: It is a condition in which women with or without diabetes will have very high levels of blood sugar during your pregnancy
- Insulin Resistance: It is a condition in which a pregnant women’s body is already resistant to the insulin hormone. It is usually a precedent to Type 2 diabetes
- Diabetes Mellitus: It is one of the most common types of diabetes.It is imperative for pregnant women with diabetes to keep blood sugar levels in the target range during their pregnancy
All the above facts point out that chewing gum is not totally unsafe during pregnancy, but at the same time it does have its negative side too. So go ahead and chew gum but only in moderation and with your doctor’s permission to avoid any unwanted complications during your pregnancy period.