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Chewing Gum Goes to Battle

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Army OfficerCombat Gum to the Rescue

Oral bacteria are one of the primary causes of dental problems, specifically tooth decay. Eliminating or greatly reducing these bacteria are the key to maintaining dental health in the absence of professional care. That is where combat gum comes into play. This sugar free gum, developed by the Army Institute of Surgical Research, took more than 7 years to develop. It goes a step further than other commercially available gums by including an enzyme that actually targets and destroys decay causing bacteria.

Proper Usage is Key to Effectiveness

Although the enzymes begin killing most bacteria in less than 5 minutes, users must chew it for longer for optimal results. The suggested minimum chewing requirements are 20 minutes at a time and at least 3 times per day, ideally after eating. When used for long periods of time, it is possible that users may develop a slight resistance to the bacteria busting enzymes in the gum. However, the goal is to reduce the abundant growth of bacteria, not eliminate it completely. Thus, the enzymes are still one of the most promising temporary substitutions for dental care.

Future Wide-Spread Implications

Although the gum is currently only available to a limited number of military personnel, expansion plans are forthcoming. This innovative gum has wide spread implications for the general public as well. Future plans may include marketing it commercially to civilians as an aide in preventing decay and increasing oral healthcare. Both military and civilian dentists will play a critical role in promoting the success of combat gum and other products that promote good oral hygiene.

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