when you don’t have a balanced bite, the negative ripple effects make their way down your entire body:
Your tongue is attached to your lower jaw and when your bite is un-aligned your tongue acts as a pillow. It cushions the jaw and helps it to relax. An imbalance in your bite affects the size of your mouth and the altered size of your mouth no longer accommodates your tongue. Your tongue can’t sit where it should. If your tongue rests too far back in your mouth, it will block the air getting to your lungs.
Bite / Teeth
An unaligned jaw joint will begin to show wear and tear on your teeth and your bite. By moving to where the jaw muscles are more balanced, your teeth are basically ‘in the way’. They then begin to grind down against one another and you end up with shortened teeth, gum recession and/or a collapsed lower third of your face.
An improper bite will lead to muscle imbalance. When your teeth are misaligned, they cannot provide enough muscle support in your face needed for chewing and swallowing. These muscles are then forced into a strained position which translates in discomfort throughout the face, head, arms, shoulders and back.
The over-worked muscles can result in muscles stiffness and soreness that will materialize in the form of migraines, headaches, earaches, muscles tenderness, facial discomfort, a sore jaw and a multitude of other symptoms.
The muscles and the nerves in the jaw and face are extremely complex and intricately connected. Therefore, when your bite is unaligned, the nerves and muscles are also affected. This misalignment can result in the muscles throughout your face, jaw, neck and shoulders going into spasms. The spasms then pinch the nerves that lead down your arms. The result of all of this? A feeling of numbness and tingling in your arms, fingers and hands.
There is a close relationship between your bite and the posture of your head and that of your entire body. If you have a bad bite or if you jaws don’t close properly (i.e. – your upper front teeth over-bite your lower bottom teeth), there is an immediate and direct affect on your head posture, causing neck strain and postural issues. If you are missing teeth, this postural strain becomes an even greater issue. Then, the muscles of your back and your neck – which in effect are your spine and its alignment – are impacted and greatly affected by an unbalanced jaw.
So, how did I get this ‘bad bite’?
Your unaligned jaw and poorly fitted teeth could be the result of one issue or a combination of possibly these factors:
- Unbalanced dental treatment
- Allergies as a child
- Thumb sucking or other oral habits
- Old dentistry that has broken down or worn out
- The shifting of teeth after tooth loss
- Some types of Orthodontic treatment
Your teeth could also be misaligned as a result of an accident or trauma issue. If you have experienced tooth loss, the shifting of your teeth can result in a bad bite which leads to TMJ. Traditional orthodontics used methods to simply straighten the teeth don’t necessarily take into consideration your overall jaw development.