Have you ever wondered why you lose your balance most of the time? Or why you end up slouching in your seat without meaning to? You may be just clumsy or lazy, but did you know that your teeth might have something to do with it?
Wonky Teeth and Your State of Equilibrium
Malocclusions – underbites, overbites and wonky teeth – are common dental problems, but in a paper in Neuroscience Letter, Spanish researchers theorised that these problems might have a negative effect on balance control.
The participants of the study include 10 physically active people and the authors concluded that dental occlusion influenced their subjects’ sense of balance. This was evident when their subjects got tired – the ones with bad bites had the worst balance.
How are the two related? The trigeminal – the nerve responsible for chewing – may be to blame, as this is associated with the vestibular nucleus or the part of the brain in charge of balance control and the muscles in your jaw and neck. The researchers concluded that once the malocclusions were treated, this improved the participants’ balance.
As for the link between wonky teeth and posture, researchers from the University of Innsbruck and the University of Barcelona said that whilst this may not be evident in everyday situations, it would manifest in conditions associated with the body’s stability, like obesity, for example.
What It Can Do For Athletes
Athletes have been said to have poor oral health, but if they get the proper procedures done, then not only will that improve the state of their dental health, but this can improve their performance as well. For athletes with wonky teeth, braces and clear aligners may be the answer you are looking for!
Monkmoor Dental Practice notes that people usually get braces to improve the appearance of their teeth. Due to teasing children and teens get when they are called ‘metal mouth’ when they have fixed braces, adults are having none of it, which is why they are opting for clear aligners like Invisalign.
If you are still on the fence on getting braces or clear aligners, just think that it enhances more than just your appearance. Your bad bite will improve along with your balance and posture, so it’s a win-win in the end.