NATIONAL CHEWING GUM DAY
National Chewing Gum Day exercises our jaws on September 30th. Pop a bubble or freshen your breath with your favorite piece of chewing gum.
Humans have used chewing gum for over 5,000 years. They may have chewed it for enjoyment, to stave off hunger, or to freshen their breath much like we do today. The sources used to make gum resulted in minty and sweet chewable globs of wax or sap resin that fulfilled the human urge to gnaw. They were unlikely to produce glossy, pink bubbles worthy of jealous pokes from siblings. However, waking up with it stuck in your hair was still a possibility.
Various forms of chewing gum have existed since the Neolithic period. In 2007, a British archaeology student discovered a 5,000-year-old piece of chewing gum made from bark tar with tooth imprints in it. Presumed to be the oldest piece of chewing gum, the discovery took place in Kierikki, Yli-li, Finland. Made from bark tar, scientists believed the gum to have antiseptic properties and other medicinal advantages.
- Many other cultures chewed gum made from the resin of the mastic tree, from plants, grasses, and other resins.
- In 1848, John B. Curtis developed and sold the first commercial chewing gum, which was called “The State of Maine Pure Spruce Gum.”
- Around 1850, a gum made from paraffin wax was developed and surpassed the spruce gum in popularity.
- December 28, 1869, William Semple filed an early patent on chewing gum, patent number 98,304.
- Studies show chewing gum helps improve memory, reduce stress, and increase alertness.
- Chewing sugar-free gum improves overall oral hygiene while also helping to curb cravings and improving digestion.
HOW TO OBSERVE #ChewingGumDay
Celebrate the day by buying a pack of your favorite flavor of chewing gum. Share a piece with your friends. You could also have a bubble-blowing contest. Just be sure not to get it in your hair when it pops!
- Share bubble gum memories. Whether it’s from times gone by or more recent experiences, retell the tale for all to hear.
- Discover the world records of bubble gum.
- Take a video of your best bubble.
- Enjoy some bubble gum ice cream.
- Research the best tips for getting ice cream out of your hair, furniture, or carpet.
- Look under your desk to see if any gruesome pieces from your predecessors remain.
- Pick up bubble gum flavored something. For example, chapstick, candy, or frosting. What other things come in bubble gum flavor or scent?
Use #ChewingGumDay to post on social media.
NATIONAL CHEWING GUM DAY HISTORY
National Day Calendar® continues researching the origin of this fascinating celebration.
Chewing Gum FAQ
Q. Are there benefits to chewing gum?
A. There are a few benefits to chewing gum. If it’s sugar-free gum, the benefits really start to add up.
- If sugar-free gum is chewed after a meal, the increased flow of saliva may help wash away acids produced by bacteria while breaking down food. This reduces plaque build-up.
- Chewing gum can help alleviate the symptoms of dry mouth.
- When cravings kick in, reach for a piece of chewing gum. The act of chewing may help keep those cravings at bay, and in turn, reduce caloric intake.
- Some flavors of sugar-free gum may reduce nausea. Gums with ginger or mint flavors are more likely to soothe an upset stomach. The benefits can also be found in mint and ginger teas.
- Chewing gum may improve certain types of memory. If you need to take a test or remember how to prepare Grandma’s meatloaf, pop in a stick of gum to boost your long-term and working memory. However, studies have yet to show improvement in short-term memory.
Q. What are the negative effects of chewing gum?
A. Chewing gum for too long may stress the muscles in the jaw and neck. Gum sweetened with sugar can increase the risk of cavities. Chewing gum can also be visually unappealing. If you are going to an interview, pop in a breath mint instead of a piece of gum.
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