Gum Mastic

From London's Ghost Acres

Gum mastic is a resin that comes from the mastic tree. (

The main uses for gum mastic, as listed in the Compendium, is for making varnishes, but it can also be used to treat decaying teeth by filling in the infected parts of the tooth.

British Pharmacopoeia 1867

Mastich Mastiche

“A resinous exudation obtained by incision from the stem of Pistacia Lentiscus… produced in the island of Scio.”[1]


“Small irregular yellowish tears, brittle, becoming soft and ductile when chewed, having a fait agreeable odour.”[2]

A Compendium of Domestic Medicine, 1865

Used to fill cavities in decayed teeth, although Savory indicates that its main function is in the making of varnishes. A compound tincture of matich can be used to make a mouth wash. Savory notes that it is commonly used by Turkish and Arminian women as a “masticatory for cleaning teeth, emulging the salivary glands, and imparting an agreeable odor to the teeth.”[3]

Remedies Containing or to be used with Gum Mastich

  • Gum Mastiche: see description[4]

Diseases Treated with Gum Mastich

General Diseases

  • Toothache: gum mastich is included in a lotion that is to be applied to a hollow or decayed tooth that is causing pain.[5]


  1. General Medical Council of Great Britain, British Pharmacopeia, (London: Spottiswoode & Co.,1867), 206
  2. GMCGB, 206
  3. Savory, John. A Compendium of Domestic Medicine (London: John Churchill and Sons, 1865), 76.
  4. Savory, 76
  5. Savory, 257

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