If you’re looking to indulge in a gigantic burger soon, then I hope you’re prepared, lest you accidentally over-extend your jaw like the residents of Taiwan.
The island of Taiwan is suffering from an addiction to Western-style fast food. So is its next-door cousin, the People’s Republic of China, for that matter.
According to experts cited by David Moye over at AOL News, it’s all due to globalization and an “increasing economic integration into the rest of the world.” Suffice it to say, the Taiwanese can’t get enough of America’s big ol’ juicy burgers—especially the over-sized, gigantic ones.
The result is that many fast-food diners have developed sore jaws and now have difficulty opening their mouths. Both are symptoms of Temporomandibular dysfunction, the China Post quoted professor Hsu Ming-lung of the School of Dentistry at National Yang-Ming University as saying.
Dentist Chen Yun-chich further added that it’s unnatural to open one’s mouth beyond four centimeters to eat.
The problem is that many of these burgers are as large as eight centimeters in height. This causes eaters to over-extend their mouths, which can and oftentimes does lead to jaw-related injuries. (Mind you my girlfriend claims she can handle 8 centimeters without difficulty, but that’s a whole different matter).
In retaliation, dentists are now urging fast food restaurants to either drop these giant burgers or put up signs that warn of the potential jaw injury that might result.
It seems rather odd, since increased jaw injuries means increased business for dentists. You got to give it up to them though for their dedication to the Hippocratic Oath, though!
Regardless, a general rule of thumb is that if you can’t fit it in your mouth, then perhaps you might want to cut it in half. And if you still can’t fit it, then perhaps you might just need some practice!