Can you chew gum with TMJ issues?

Take it easy on your jaw. 

It does a lot. 
It spends all day moving up and down like a bachelorette contestant who can't choose her man (Pick Nayte! Or Logan! Or Clayton! Just make up yer damn mind).
You eat, talk, laugh, chew and yawn more than you know. Your jaw probably finds you obnoxious😩.
So imagine how it feels when you pop in a piece of hard, rubbery gum. It's waiting for this thing to break down so it can breathe for a second, but nooooo sir. It just keeps that jaw busy for no apparent reason. 
Take it from Tatyana O'Donnell, a fellow gum-loving RDH (to.flossy_n_fitness):
"The TMJ, like many other joints in the body, can suffer from serious repetitive injury and become damaged and deteriorate. It’s best to think of gum chewing as a form of a jaw exercise; like other muscles in your body, when you overuse your mastication muscles it can lead to exhaustion and pain."
But not all gum is created equal🤩. 
"Most gum is made of synthetic vinyl, sugar alcohols, and other ingredients that give it it’s texture and consistency but is very hard to chew with no real value to one’s overall health."
"Now I'd usually recommend that my TMD involved patients avoid gum chewing at all costs."
"BUT I am so happy to say that I found a gum that I would recommend over and over and can’t stop using myself!"
"Happy ppl makes a natural chicle-based gum that's alot softer than regular (aka plastic) gum. It's literally made from tree sap."
"The softer the gum, the less the jaw has to work to chew it, and the softer consistency makes the chewing experience a more mindful process😇."
If you have TMJ issues, but love chewing gum, we've got you covered!