Xylitol and cavities
- Xylitol in the correct daily dose has been proven to lower decay rates
- Xylitol is a safe, healthy, and effective sugar substitute
- Xylitol is available in many forms, making it easy to use
How does xylitol prevent cavities?
Xylitol is a 5-carbon sugar that is commonly found in birch tree sap and naturally occurring in some fruits and vegetables.
Xylitol works to prevent cavities in a number of ways:
- Bacteria cannot break down xylitol into acid as they do from all other fermentable sugars (i.e. sucrose, glucose, fructose, dextrose, etc.).
- When bacteria intake xylitol, they don't intake as much other fermentable sugars, reducing acid production.
- Xylitol helps prevent the bacteria from adhering to the enamel, which prevents them from reproducing.
- Xylitol, used in conjunction with fluoride, can be more effective at repairing and remineralizing teeth than fluoride alone.
Xylitol actually works to control the number of acid-producing bacteria in the mouth, which can in turn prevent cavities. It is available in many forms, from gums and mints to toothpastes and mouth rinses.
- Xylitol is usually measured in grams, and studies show the recommended therapeutic dose is 6 – 11 grams per day.
- Alkaline dental products that combine xylitol and fluoride may be more effective.
- If you ingest more than 25 – 30 grams in one day, you may have an upset stomach and/or diarrhea.
- Xylitol can be very harmful, even potentially fatal, to dogs, as they cannot metabolize it like people can.