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The TMJ Gum Chewing Connection

Gum chewing is as common as tying shoelaces. However, chewing gum might not be as wonderful as one thinks. Gum has benefits, but it also has negative aspects. Chewing gum may cause health conditions as well as relieve stress. Before grabbing that next stick of chewing gum, one should understand the possible risks involved with gum.

 Gum Chewing

Some evidence suggests that Northern Europeans were chewing birch bark tar to reduce symptoms of toothaches about 9,000 years ago. Even the ancient Maya were chewing chicle to subside their feelings of hunger and thirst. Chewing gum, as we know it, came about in the 20th century.

Although chewing gum is a typical appearance at grocery stores and in many pockets or purses, it can cause various health conditions if used excessively. Excessive chewing of gum can result in:

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
  • Tooth decay
  • Release of Mercury from dental fillings
  • TMJ disorder

Irritable Bowel Syndrome from chewing gum is a result of swallowing excess air. Sugary gum can cause cavities, tooth decay, or gum disease, so if one likes chewing gum, opt for the sugar-free varieties. Additionally, if someone has amalgam fillings, chewing gum can release mercury the fillings contain into the body. High levels of mercury can result in adverse effects on the lungs, kidneys, nervous system, or immune system.

 TMJ and Gum Chewing

In addition to the above conditions, chewing gum can also cause temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJD). With excessive chewing, a person's jaw becomes overused, and the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) can cause oral and facial pain for the individual. Other symptoms of TMJD include:

  • Headaches
  • Lockjaw
  • Teeth clenching or grinding
  • Tinnitus

If a person is experiencing any combination of TMJD symptoms, they should stop chewing gum and speak with a doctor specializing in TMJD about their symptoms. After speaking with a doctor and receiving a TMJD diagnosis, an individual will begin their treatment plan. In most cases, individuals will need short-term and long-term management of symptoms, including chewing gum and eating foods that overwork the temporomandibular joint.

 TMJ Relief in Washington

 Dr. Buck is a facial orthopedist based in the state of Washington. Dr. Buck, and his fellow ENT physicians and pulmonologists, by combining their expertise, help patients find relief from TMJD. With Dr. Buck and his team, relief from the severity and alleviate symptoms of TMJD is possible. For more information on Dr. Buck's practice and the treatment options he provides, please schedule an appointment by giving us a call today at 206-316-8286. Additionally, one may contact us by filling out our online form.

What's a Polysomnography?
​TMJ and Eliminating Migraines

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Epigenetic Orthodontics

Epigenetic Orthodontics can open and protect the airway enhancing breathing both during sleep and awake activities.

Dr. Buck practices a philosophy that integrates airway into all diagnosis and treatments. Dentistry has traditionally not considered the airway when planning dental treatments. Fortunately, today there is a rapidly growing movement that now recognizes how dentistry can have an impact on the airway which affects breathing during sleep. If dental treatments, including TMJ, orthopedic and orthodontics are well planned the result can be that the airway is protected or even enhanced. There is a clear link between underdeveloped and retruded jaws together with narrow dental arches that puts a patient at risk for sleep breathing disorders.

Please visit this site for more information; Airway Health

Airway Improvement

WOW! A 54% decrease in forward head posture; 164% increase in the antero-posterior size of the airway; 176% increase in the lateral size of the airway all from epigenetically centered jaw development orthopedics. This is the future of orthodontics!​
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