Are you one of those who grind their teeth at night? One of the primary reasons for grinding is stress. Did you know that you grind your teeth involuntarily and mostly when you sleep? It’s a habit which people don’t even know they have and hence, can hang around for many years. Overtime, it becomes hard to overcome this as it has been happening for several years. Nevertheless, it is easy to overcome it. Both children and adults are prone to grinding and sometimes, unless and until pointed out by a dentist, people do not know they grind their teeth. It’s not a serious medical condition but it can cause quite a bit of havoc in the mouth – chipping of teeth, teeth getting loose, damage to the teeth and jaw disorders are few of the impacts grinding can have. Of the different methods, yoga is an au natural way of coming out of teeth grinding.
What is grinding?
Also known as bruxism, teeth grinding refers to the clamping or clenching of the upper and lower jaws and grinding the lower with the upper jaw.
How to overcome grinding?
Since the causative factor is stress, by reducing the amount of stress in your life, you can eventually stop grinding. Stress can be reduced by yoga. Few yoga poses which you can inculcate in your daily life for the reduction of stress are:
- Eyes around the clock pose – Stress on the eyes can affect the others parts of the face which includes your jaw; shocking but true. Eyes around the clock is a yoga pose which can relax your eyes. Start by closing your eyes and rotating them twenty times clockwise and anti-clockwise.
- Warrior 2 – The warrior 2 pose targets the sub-occipital muscles that lie in the neck. To begin, you need to spread your feet out wherein the back foot is at a 45 degree angle and the front foot is pointing straight ahead. Raise your arms to shoulder level. The shoulders and back need to be relaxed the entire time. Then increase your spine and turn your head toward the direction of the forward facing foot. You can hold this pose for about 20 breaths. Repeat the same thing on the other side.
- The camel pose – This pose opens up the sub-occipital muscles that are found in your neck. For this pose, you need to sit on your knees, make sure they are hip width apart. Gradually and slowly, lift your body so as to rise up, but keeping your knees on the ground. You need to come to a kneeling down position. Keep your hand on your lower back and lengthen your spine and push your pelvis forward and up. Slowly, tilt your head as far back as you can go. The whole time, you need to keep your shoulders relaxed. This pose can be held for 10 breaths. Overtime, once you get used to the pose, instead of keeping your hands on your lower back, you can slowly move it and touch your ankles.
- Bridge pose – For this pose, you need to lie on your back and slowly lift your hips off the ground and push it forward. Simultaneously, interconnect your fingers behind your back. Do this without squeezing your shoulders together. Bend your head in such a way that your chin touches your chest. You can hold this posture for 10 breaths.
Yoga is not a cure that will work overnight. It’s a practice. In due course time, you will feel lighter and a sense of ease will settle in. You need to commit yourself to carrying out these postures regularly. Through consistently practicing yoga and deep breathing, the grinding problem will slowly and steadily begin to diminish.