Phone (513) 251-5500
November 6th, 2019

Improve Your Oral Health By Improving Your Posture

Category: cincinnati dentist

improve your oral health by improving your posture

Remember when mom used to say, “Sit up straight!?”

Well, she wasn’t kidding, and she was right about the importance of posture: it can actually have quite a few negative effects on your health when you have poor posture.

Having poor posture can put lots of undue stress on the body, but it actually can lead to negative health consequences you may not have even been aware of. Here are just a few ways that poor posture can affect your health over time:

It can impact your oral heath

You may be saying, “How can that be?” First, think of just how many things we do each day can impact what we call “posture.”

Do you look down at your phone when texting or when using apps? (Consider how some people use their phones more than 4 hours per day; that’s four hours where your head is putting a strain on your neck, back, and spine.)

Do you find yourself waking up in pain after some nights of sleep—a sign you could have poor posture even throughout the night? Do you know if your workstation is set up to be as ergonomically correct as possible?

If and when you slouch, you do tend to push your lower jaw forward. In turn, that can put pressure on your spine. Over time—just like many things with our health—this can contribute to a bite becoming misaligned. It can also mean your teeth do not align as they once did or as they should.

Your jaw can then try to compensate, which can cause further damage and can even damage the teeth in your mouth if left unchecked. Another issue that can at times be a result (or associated with) poor posture is TMJ Disorder. This is when people have issues or problems with their jaw and the muscles in your face that control it. (Ask us for more information on TMJ Disorder and TMJ-related pain/disorders.)

It can result in back pain

This one is probably not so surprising. It’s one of the most shared effects of bad posture and chronic back pain is, unfortunately, quite common. Whether it is pressure on the spine, disc generation, or a combination of things, poor posture can be at the root of many back aches and pains.

It can lead to poor digestion

Do you notice you are slouching over your desk each day if you work a job that requires you to sit at a desk? Over time, that kind of slouched posture can compress your abdominal organs and negatively impact the way your metabolism and digestion naturally occurs.

It can make arthritis worse

Over time, some people can experience mis-alignment of your spine or knees due to poor posture. Think of it this way: you’re adding pressure to one part of the joint and that can cause pain. That can worsen arthritis of the knees or even in other areas of the body. Ouch!

It can pinch nerves

If your spine, bones, and surrounding tissue start to adapt because of your bad posture, you can experience pain when the skeletal systems comes into contact with the surrounding nerves. Just as it sounds, that nerve is being pinched—and you will no doubt feel the pain as a result!

It can impact mood

Who would willingly do something that could negatively impact their mood?! Not us! Research has shown evidence that poor posture can negatively affect your mood—or at least, the other way around—where good posture can boost your mood (1).

The point is: our bodies are working optimally when we have good posture, and our mood is just one more way our bodies can be telling us we need to adjust something.

good posture is good for your oral health hagen dental in cincinnati

Good Posture Is Good for Your Oral Health

Good posture promotes your overall health and it also promotes a healthy smile. It also can help you combat certain jaw-related issues, too.

To work against doing any kind of damage to your teeth or jaw, focus on first setting up your workstation so that you aren’t looking down to your work or to your computer. You can also take these steps to work towards good posture:

  • No matter what you do for work, take breaks during the day and when possible, take a walk
  • Stretch, stretch, stretch! You want to do all you can to work against any slouching or positions your body is in that contribute to poor posture
  • Work in an exercise routine that builds a strong foundation (or core) and posture
  • Watch the amount of time you put your head downwards towards your phone to scroll through social media, to check email, or to text. That’s a lot of pressure on your neck!

Wondering if you’re practicing good posture while you read this? This isn’t an exhaustive or comprehensive list, but some quick tips that you can use:

  • First and foremost, sit up straight!
  • In general, your line of sight should be level with the top of your computer monitor.
  • Lift your chest, pull your shoulder blades back and make sure they are down.
  • Aim for your feet to be flat on the floor if you are sitting.
  • If you are sitting with a keyboard, your elbows can be at a near-90 degree angle when your fingers are in the typing position in the home row of the keyboard; that helps to put the least amount of stress on your muscles.
  • At the same time, you want to keep your stomach muscles tight or “activated”
  • If sitting, your hips can be lined up with your ears.
  • Make sure you are not leaning towards one half of your body or favoring one half of your body over the other.

Looking for a New Dentist? Give Hagen Dental Practice a Call

We value making sure you feel relaxed and comfortable during your visit just as much as we value the health of your pearly whites—and we’ll do everything we can to make you and your entire family feel at home.

We hope to see you and your family for your next appointment. Give us a call today at (513) 251-5500 or visit our website here for convenient online scheduling!

Source:

  1. https://health.usnews.com/wellness/slideshows/10-ways-poor-posture-can-harm-your-health?slide=5

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