ISSN : 2092-8475(Print)
ISSN : (Online)
Effect of Masticating Chewing Gum on the Balance of Stroke Patients
Background: Masticating is an activity that is free from temporal or spatial constraints, with an advantage that it can be combined easily with other treatment methods. While several studies have reported a positive effect of the intervention of chewing using the jaw on postural stability, only a few studies were conducted on stroke patients. Objectives: To investigated the effects of masticating chewing gum on the static and dynamic balancing of stroke patients. Design: Randomized cross-over study design. Methods: Nineteen stroke patients were randomly assigned to the chewing group or control group. BT4 was used to measure the static and dynamic balancing abilities. Pre-test measurements were taken before mastication of chewing gum, and post-test measurements were taken after 2 days. The stroke patients in the chewing group were guided to sit on a chair and chew gum for 3 min, and their balancing abilities were simultaneously measured. The balancing abilities of the control group patients were measured while they sat at rest without masticating chewing gum. Results: The chewing group showed significant increases in the measures of static balance (i.e., C90 area, trace length, X mean, and Y mean). In the between-group comparison, the measures of static balance were significantly higher in the chewing group than in the control group. Conclusion: These findings suggest that masticating chewing gum enhanced the static balancing ability of stroke patients. Thus, gum chewing should be considered a viable clinical intervention to control posture in stroke patients.