When most people think about health they go through the daily routines that are carried out for a bright and healthy smile. While brushing, flossing and using mouthwash are essential to a healthy mouth, there may be one habit that could be affecting one’s jaws. Bad posture has been linked to a number of serious dental health issues, and that is why it is important for everyone to understand how these two facets of one’s life are closely intertwined.
How Your Posture Affects Your Oral Health
The hinge of one’s jaw is often seen as one of the most complex joints in the body. Not only does it attach to one’s cranium, teeth, nerve bundles, muscles and other forms of tissue, it also performs very complicated movements. This includes ligaments, discs and bones working together in order to stretch one’s jaw, clench their teeth, pull the jaw backwards and even move side-to-side. The position of the jaw will always affect the position of one’s head, which will affect the shape of the spine.
For those that slouch, the lower half of the jaw is thrust forward in an unnatural manner. This causes the skull to move backwards and compress the spine, which will affect almost every part of the body from shoulders to the pelvis. As time goes on, these few issues could turn into major medical problems when not corrected. For those with chronic bad posture, the most common issues include shortening of the jaw muscles, inflammation around the jaws and a misaligned bite.
Often referred to as TMJ, temporomandibular joint disorder is a relatively common medical condition in which there is some issue taking place with the upper and lower jaw working together. Some of the most common side effects include chronic headaches, a clicking sound when opening the jaw, pain when yawning, tenderness of the jaw and face, and a change in the way teeth fit together with one another. With a misaligned bite, the individual will also have a much greater chance of uneven wear or cracked teeth.
This is why it is essential to practice great posture at all times. Whether it is going on a short walk or sitting behind the desk for hours, keeping one’s core tight, their shoulders located above their hips and their ears directly above their shoulders can go a long ways towards great oral health.