Chewing provides muscle sense stimuli to the jaw that is very calming and organizing. It's similar to how some people might bite their fingernails when they're nervous, or pace back and forth, do deep breathing, tap their foot, etc.
Chewing helps to reduce stress on the oesophagus and helps the stomach metabolise and break down your food. Saliva also contains digestive enzymes that are released when chewing which assists with digestion.
Chewing was thought to affect stress modification in humans; two studies suggested that the neural mechanism by which chewing gum reduces stress involves the prefrontal cortex, which then affects the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis and autonomic nervous system activity .
Another found that chewing gum can improve a negative mood, and increase levels of peace and calm. Scientists don't know precisely why, but believe it's because chewing gum tends to improve blood flow in the brain.
Chewing gum cab be an inexpensive and effective way to help relieve anxiety and boost attention. Results across eight research trials that included more than 400 adults found chewing gum more often, compared to never chewing gum, resulted in a significant reduction in anxiety.
It might be because chewing helps lower stress levels. A small research review of 20 studies on chewing gum and stress found evidence that gum reduced stress for people in work and educational settings.
It's typically related to some kind of stress and/or anxiety. Similar to how babies mouth/chew on things to self-soothe, chewing is a calming mechanism that stays with us as we get older, more so for some people than for others.
In 2009, the Baylor College of Medicine in England conducted a study that showed chewing gum actually reduces stress for kids with ADHD. They reported that chewing is soothing and helps calm nerves, thanks to its repetition. When kids with ADHD chew gum, they may have fewer behavioral problems or emotional outbursts.
Chewing is also an effective stress-coping behavior. When exposed to an inescapable stressor, animals assume coping behaviors, such as chewing, that attenuate some elements of the stress response .
They found levels of depression, anxiety and stress were significantly lower in both chewing gum groups, while academic success scores were higher in 19-day gum chewers only compared to the other groups.
You might be wondering: “Why do I want to eat when I'm anxious or stressed?” When you're anxious your adrenal glands release the “stress hormone” cortisol. This may stimulate an increase in appetite and cravings for fatty, salty, and sweet foods. These urges aren't the result of an empty stomach or low blood sugar.
Chewing can help calm and de-stress. It can help increase focus and attention. It can help regulate one's sensory system.
If you are noticing that your jaw feels tired – as in, chewing or speaking is starting to feel like a chore – it's time to schedule a dental visit with us. It's possible that you have been overworking your jaws to the extent that a bit of an oral health problem has arisen.
Constant gum chewing puts excessive force on your temporomandibular joints, muscles and teeth, which leads to overstress, imbalance and misalignment. This can cause: Clicking or popping in one or both temporomandibular joints. Headaches.
Oral stimming often involves chewing on objects to cope with anxiety and stress. You might chew on: rocks.
Chewing and sucking helps to self soothe so it is a strategy that children and adults use to help to calm themselves down if they are experiencing sensory overload. Because the jaw is one of the most powerful muscles in the human body, chewing gives the brain a big hit of proprioceptive sensory input.
Chewing activates several brain regions that are essential for cognitive processing, including the hippocampus and prefrontal cortex.
Experts believe that people with ADHD may overeat to satisfy their brain's need for stimulation. Also, problems with executive function can make self-control and self-regulation difficult. Inattention can also be a factor. People with ADHD may not be as aware of or focused on their eating habits.
Chewing can be a habit that a child develops to deal with boredom. If they don't have anything to occupy their hands or mouth, they may chew on their hair or a pencil. Some children might chew as a way to cope with anxiety. Chewing can be a self-soothing behavior that helps to reduce feelings of stress or nervousness.
Hyperfocusing on picking their skin, pulling/eating their hair, or chewing their nails/cheeks can send kids with ADHD into a “trance” to escape from feeling overwhelmed by a day of executive demands.
Chew and Spit (sometimes abbreviated as CHSP or CS) is a compensatory behavior associated with several eating disorders that involves the chewing of food and spitting it out before swallowing, often as an attempt to avoid ingestion of unwanted or unnecessary calories.