Ask a doctor: “Is it dangerous to swallow chewing gum?”

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It may be tempting to swallow gum if there isn't a trash can nearby to throw it away, but is it dangerous to do so?

While not necessarily a health hazard, swallowing gum is not a good habitaccording to Dr. Ari Lamet, a gastroenterologist in Hollywood, Florida.

“Swallowing a piece of gum every now and then shouldn't be a problem if you have a normal gastrointestinal tract or not have had an intestinal blockage,” Lamet told Fox News Digital.

MEET THE AMERICAN WHO CREATED CHEWING GUM, WALTER DIEMER, HOME KITCHEN CHEMIST, WHITE SCIENTISTS

What about those age-old warnings that chewing gum takes seven years to digest?

The truth is that it doesn't digest at all.

Although not necessarily a health hazard, doctors say swallowing gum is not a good habit. (iStock)

“Chewing gum is not digestible (and has no nutritional value), so it will eventually pass into your stool,” Lamet said.

Dr. Kerry Frommer Firestein, a pediatrician and CEO of the Allied Physicians Group in New York, agreed that swallowing gum is likely to have little to no consequences. influence on your health.

ASPARTAME IN CHEWING GUM: DENTISTS ARE WEIGHING THE SAFETY OF THE SWEETENER FOR TEETH AND GUMS

“The tough part of the gum cannot be digested,” she told Fox News Digital. “It will pass through your intestines and come out through stool within a day or so.”

However, swallowing chewing gum could be more dangerous for some people, the doctors warned.

'If you've had that GI surgery or has experienced previous blockages, it is best to avoid swallowing gum,” Lamet said.

Pack of chewing gum

Swallowing chewing gum could be more dangerous for some people, doctors warned. (iStock)

Swallowing gum can be more dangerous in someone who regularly swallows large amounts, Firestein noted.

It can also be dangerous if swallowed with other non-food items, she added. “They can all mix together and create something that gets stuck in the intestinal tract.”

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Chewing gum can also cause you to swallow more air than normal, she warned — which can cause gas and bloating.

Bubblegum woman iStock 1187799318

“The best way to prevent intestinal blockage is to avoid chewing gum at all,” one doctor advised. (iStock)

“It can also cause jaw problems, leading to jaw pain, headaches and earaches,” she said.

Even if you don't fall into one of the risk categories, Lamet says it's best not to make a habit of chewing gum.

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“The best way to prevent an intestinal blockage is not to swallow it at all.”

For more health articles, visit www.foxnews.com/health.

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