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Old 03-16-2020, 07:07 PM
 
116 posts, read 42,127 times
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Not sure if it's just as prevalent now, but when I was growing up most kids were told if they swallowed gum it would take 7 years to digest, as parents I am curious if you can explain why they say that given how completely inaccurate it is, as it passes just like everything else the next time you use the restroom, were parents really worried that swallowing gum could harm you or something?
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Old 03-16-2020, 07:11 PM
 
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Like a lot of things. Old wives tale.
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Old 03-16-2020, 08:48 PM
 
Location: State of Transition
84,665 posts, read 77,832,245 times
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I've never heard that. Most parents when I was a kid told their kids it was nothing to worry about, if they swallowed gum.
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Old 03-17-2020, 12:05 AM
 
Location: Troy, NY
2,048 posts, read 384,134 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerobime227 View Post
Not sure if it's just as prevalent now, but when I was growing up most kids were told if they swallowed gum it would take 7 years to digest, as parents I am curious if you can explain why they say that given how completely inaccurate it is, as it passes just like everything else the next time you use the restroom, were parents really worried that swallowing gum could harm you or something?
Yes they were.


A piece of gum, shouldn't hurt you. But don't make it a habit.

Quote:
Although chewing gum is designed to be chewed and not swallowed, it generally isn't harmful if swallowed. Folklore suggests that swallowed gum sits in your stomach for seven years before it can be digested. But this isn't true. If you swallow gum, it's true that your body can't digest it. But the gum doesn't stay in your stomach. It moves relatively intact through your digestive system and is excreted in your stool.

On very rare occasions, large amounts of swallowed gum combined with constipation have blocked intestines in children. It's for this reason that frequent swallowing of chewing gum should be discouraged, especially in children
https://www.mayoclinic.org/digestive...s/faq-20058446
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Old 03-17-2020, 09:52 AM
 
1,486 posts, read 466,777 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gerobime227 View Post
Not sure if it's just as prevalent now, but when I was growing up most kids were told if they swallowed gum it would take 7 years to digest, as parents I am curious if you can explain why they say that given how completely inaccurate it is, as it passes just like everything else the next time you use the restroom, were parents really worried that swallowing gum could harm you or something?
You surely do come up with some odd questions.

Put it this way--when I was a child, we children were often told by adults that swallowing watermelon seeds would cause a watermelon vine to grow in our stomachs. They also told us that if we were pulling an ugly or silly face that it would likely freeze that way.

What you were told about swallowing chewing gum falls into that very same category. No parent that I knew of (and most parents in my world were pretty darn pragmatic and practical-minded), was fearful that swallowing gum was particularly harmful in any way.

Most parents' biggest worry with chewing gum was trying to get it out of a kid's hair after he or she fell asleep with a wad of gum in his or her mouth or if they were sticking their ABC gum underneath the dining room table.
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Old 03-17-2020, 10:02 AM
 
Location: Pacific Northwest
438 posts, read 212,180 times
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My parents never said anything about gum. But when cell phones first became popular with kids my mother would limit me talking on the phone to 10 minutes or else "you'll grow a 3rd ear".

In reality she just wanted to avoid me repeating my older sisters habits of talking on the phone for hours on end. But I didn't know that and at the time there were plenty of warnings about radiation and such with cell phones so why won't I believe her. In fact recently I overheard a parent tell their kid coronavirus is spread from talking on the phone.

Parents tend to get creative when attempting to break habits in children. Look at all our traditional fairy tales and folk stories from around the world. Most are simply over dramatized pieces of fiction wrapped with warnings to prevent children from harmful or annoying habits. They've just gotten simpler as years have gone by.
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Old 03-17-2020, 11:13 AM
 
5,520 posts, read 5,788,620 times
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I think that in general it is not a good thing to swallow something that the body can't digest.
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Old 03-17-2020, 12:05 PM
 
9,161 posts, read 4,679,598 times
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My Mom didn't let us have gum at all so I never heard that, but only "It makes you look like a cow chewing cud." hahaha
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Old 03-17-2020, 12:40 PM
 
Location: Tucson Arizona
4,928 posts, read 2,237,900 times
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I heard that from other kids, not adults.
My mom just said not to chew gum at all. She thought it looked cheap.
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Old 03-17-2020, 02:35 PM
 
Location: planet earth
6,677 posts, read 2,808,034 times
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OP: Why? To discourage the little idiots from doing it.
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