What is TMD? Don’t Bite off More than You Can Chew

Reasons for temporomadibular joint disorder: What is TMD and what are the symptoms?

When is the last time you were face-to-face with a gigantic sub sandwich or double-decker burger? You know, the kind that are so big, you can barely get your mouth open wide enough to get a bite? Aside from being a bit awkward, taking huge bites of food can also be damaging to your oral health!

First off, opening your mouth wider than is comfortable or natural can damage the joints of your jaw. This is an even bigger problem if you already have difficulties due to temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMD. Bottom line, taking big bites can injure your jaw.

Another culprit is stuffing your mouth too full. This can tend to be a bad habit, and is often a result of either waiting so long to eat that you become overly hungry, or being in a hurry. Busy people who eat on the run are susceptible to this. Again, the problem is that when chewing too much food you can injure the jaw, and put stress on your teeth, resulting in dental problems.

Another thing to point out is that there is a correlation between taking large bites and not chewing food thoroughly. This can cause a number of digestive problems, and result in excess weight gain.

The solution to these issues is to eat slowly and cut up your food to avoid having to take overly large bites. Chew your food thoroughly. If hunger is an issue, opt for small snacks throughout the day, so you don’t end up starving! Slow down, and enjoy your meal. You will find that you become satisfied more easily, and as a result, you will eat less.

Other damage to your oral health can occur when you bite into foods that are too hard. Some examples would be hard candies and ice cubes. You should absolutely avoid chewing on these things. The same goes for attempting to crack nuts or open bottles with your teeth. You can chip or crack your teeth by doing this.

Your jaws and teeth are strong, but they are not invincible! You need to treat your mouth with a little TLC to avoid potentially painful and costly damage. Overstressing and injuring your jaw can result in permanent damage that can be quite painful. You may end up having to drink your meal with a straw.

So, next time you are out, you may want to pass up that extra large burger for something a bit more bite-sized!