What happens to your digestive tract when you swallow gum?

Although chewing gum helps people refresh their breath or stay alert, what are the consequences of swallowing gum?

What happens to your digestive tract when you swallow gum? [womeneat]

Chewing gum was formerly made from tree resin, but it is now made from a synthetic compound known as gum base. This substance lacks nutrients and isn't broken down by our digestive system, unlike most foods we eat.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, a medical website that spoke with a dietitian here’s what happens when you swallow gum.

You’ve probably heard that gum stays in your stomach for seven years, but is this true?

Gum does not linger in your stomach for seven years or seven days; it can be ingested entirely and excreted roughly 40 hours later in your stool. This is because it cannot be digested, so your body cannot absorb it.

It is not uncommon to eat foods that your body cannot digest, for example raw seeds, corn kernels, and bell pepper peels cannot be digested. However, whatever goes in will eventually come out.

Swallowing a considerable amount of gum in a short period, like once every day for a week, might result in an intestinal blockage, which causes pain and pressure. This blockage is similar to a blocked pipe in a house, where nothing can pass through, resulting in increased pressure and, finally, cracking or bursting.

If left untreated, it can burst the gastrointestinal tract. The symptoms of an intestinal blockage include abdominal pain, constipation, excessive fullness or swelling, severe cramping, and vomiting.

In conclusion, avoid swallowing a large quantity of gum consistently, simply spit it out and seek medical assistance if any of these symptoms appear.

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