You may remember as a child being told to “sit up straight”. There is a good reason for this. Posture has a huge affect on our bodies, and what surprises most people is that this includes our dental health.
Poor posture misaligns the spine by placing the spine in a position that can add stress to the jaw joint. Sitting while slouching forward or hunched over forces the lower jaw to shift forward, which then causes the upper and lower teeth to not fit together properly and the skull to move back on the spinal column.
This movement adds stress on the muscular and skeletal systems and can create inflammation and pain in the facial muscles and joints.
Signs and Symptoms
Poor posture is an overlooked contributor to TMJ (Temporomandibular) Disorder. The major symptoms of TMJ include aches and pain in the jaw, headaches, neck pain and possible locking of the joint.
Anyone is at risk and people of all ages and occupations are capable of suffering from poor posture, but those who spend more hours sitting at a desk or computer are at an increased risk. If you find that you are experiencing pain in your lower jaw and/or suffering from frequent headaches, you may want to take notice of your posture. Of course, scheduling an appointment with your primary care physician or dentist is always important and should not be overlooked.