Posture and Your Oral Health
Your posture and your bite are closely related. When any part of your body is out of alignment with the other parts, there is a similar chain reaction. When your upper and lower teeth are closed together, each tooth actually forms a skeletal relationship with its opposing tooth. This bite determines the position of your jaw, and in turn, the position of your head on your spine.
Check Your Posture
To demonstrate this, tilt your head backwards and close your teeth lightly together. Notice that your back teeth hit first. Now tilt your head forward toward your chest and again lightly touch your teeth together. Now the front teeth hit first. These exaggerated movements demonstrate how the bite and head position affect one another.
The teeth are part of the skeletal system. When your teeth are improperly aligned, there is often a compensating effect throughout the postural chain. The body will adjust itself. This can involve muscles in the neck, back, and even those of the pelvis, legs, and feet. Poor posture is not often thought of as a health problem. Over time, however, the consequences of postural neglect can be as damaging as an injury.
There are specific symptoms of a poorly postured bite such as: Numbing or tingling sensation in one hand, pain in the jaw, head neck, shoulders, back, and difficulty clearing the ears .
When your bite is involved with a postural problem, the dentist must correct it so that the muscles, bones, and teeth can function without strain and tension. Because the postural position of the head, neck, and shoulders is so closely related to the bite, both dental therapy and physical therapy may be needed to correct the bite. Doing so will then frequently relieve seemingly unrelated symptoms such as pain in the head, neck, and back.
Poor postural habits become more difficult to correct the longer they exist, and they also become more injurious to your body. If you have any of the symptoms described, call us today for a routine check-up.
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