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Crooked Teeth Tied to Balance and Posture

Could fixing the alignment of your teeth lead to better balance and posture?

Two studies suggest this is the case. The malocclusion of teeth, sometimes described as crowded teeth, misaligned teeth, crossbite, overbite, or underbite, have been associated with both postural and balance control.

Specifically, the studies provided conclusive data that postural control is improved when various malocclusions are corrected by positioning the jaw in a neutral position. The first study showed that alterations in alignment of the teeth were related to poorer control of static balance. The second study demonstrated that balance improved when malocclusions were corrected, and had a greater impact on postural control when subjects were fatigued than when they were rested.

The link may have a neurophysiological explanation. Postural control is the result of a complex system that includes different sensory and motor elements arising from visual, somatosensory and vestibular information, noted a researcher.

Researched suggested that the broader population, and athletes in particular, should consider correcting dental occlusions to improve postural control and thus prevent possible falls and instability due to a lack of motor system response.

Studies cited in this research include “Dental occlusion influences the standing balance on an unstable platform” published in Motor Control and “The influence of dental occlusion on the body balance in unstable platform increases after high intensity exercise” published in Neuroscience Letters.

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