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*We’d like to thank Rochelle Fodi, RDH for sharing her personal experience with Spry products. If you have an experience you’d like to share, please contact us at  After attending my son’s graduate school ceremony, he approached me. “Mom, I’m congested. I’m sneezing and my nose is running.”I thought of what I could give him to help relieve his symptoms. He needed an antihistamine. But he refused the medication. “I will fall asleep, and I don’t want to fall asleep in the middle of the day.” I figured there was only one option that could help. I handed him two pieces of xylitol chewing gum.

“Here, take this,” I said, figuring it should at least soothe his throat, considering the gum had helped his father who had dry mouth earlier that year.Within one hour, he came to me and asked, “Do you have more of that gum?”“Sure, but why?” I asked.“Because my nose cleared up and I stopped sneezing,” he stated.

I froze in disbelief. We immediately scanned the internet to purchase Xlear xylitol sprays and nasal wash. I knew of these products from dental journals and meetings. However, I never investigated the research on xylitol’s effect on upper respiratory health.

My son’s problematic health history was common with those children who suffer from allergies. He had ear infections since birth. At three months old he had to take numerous antibiotics. Also, at three months old he was only the second youngest child to surgically have tubes placed in his ears by a very prestigious ENT, only to be followed by two hospitalizations with general anesthesia. He constantly endured ear infections and strep throat.

And the drugs! Antibiotics, antihistamines, decongestants, and pain relievers! Being a dental hygienist and practicing for 35 years, my introduction to xylitol was purely for oral issues. My patients and husband had troubles with root decay including xerostomia. I’ve had great success with xylitol; my high risk root decay and xerostomia patients are thrilled as I encourage them to enjoy the daily regimen of xylitol candy. I never really concentrated on the facts of reduction for allergies, ear infections and yeast issues. As dental professionals we all must educate our patients of this amazing gift from nature.
Xylitol is a natural, five-carbon sugar, which cannot be metabolized by bacteria. Without the completion of the metabolic process, the bacteria cannot thrive. Xylitol is a wonderful aid for keeping oral, nasal, and throat tissues moist, which increases a natural defense. Xylitol’s low glycemic index makes it practical for diabetics and helps with weight reduction. The increasing research shows the effects xylitol has on yeast, MRSA, Staph and Strep can be amazing.I highly encourage all health professionals, both dental and medical, to become informed about the wonders of xylitol and educate their patients.After 24 years, of managing my son’s miserable allergy issues, xylitol is a true miracle and all it took was “just a piece of gum!”