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Ways Yoga Can Improve Your Dental Health  

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Ways Yoga Can Improve Your Dental Health  

When you think of yoga, you might not immediately think of your teeth. Teeth are not muscles, so how could doing yoga improve dental health?

The truth is, it can do a lot. Your teeth are highly impacted by your overall oral health, the health of your gums, and the muscles in your jaw and neck. A yoga practice can help keep your teeth whole, straight, white, and sparkling by stimulating your body’s natural supportive functions.

Although yoga makes a great complement to brushing and flossing, it can’t do everything. Yoga helps to support regular dental health practice, and it can’t replace cosmetic whitening or orthodontics. If you’re interested in improving your smile with professional cosmetic dentistry, check out

Yoga Can Help Reduce Jaw Strain

Many people grind their teeth at night or when they are experiencing stress. This is normal for many people, but that doesn’t mean it’s okay for your dental health. Grinding your teeth, also called “bruxism”, is typically caused by tension and stress, and it can wreak havoc on your teeth and gums.

Over time, bruxism can lead to chipped and broken teeth, sore and receding gums, misaligned jaws, and sensitive teeth. These issues can be expensive and painful to fix, but they are preventable.

Regular yoga practice can allow you to relax the muscles in your neck and jaws, as well as to reduce the daily stress that you deal with in your life. With reduced stress levels and relaxed muscles, your mouth and jaws can work the way they were intended to.

Posture Can Help Straighten Your Teeth

Many people who work at a desk develop a forward head posture. This hunch can put pressure on your neck, causing jaw and facial pain that can end up misaligning your teeth and causing dental problems.

Although it might be hard to imagine muscles affecting your teeth, there is a close relationship between the two. When your jaws can’t align properly because the muscles that should be supporting them are misaligned, your teeth are put through a lot more stressful wear and tear daily.

Yoga Poses Encourage Your Body to Produce Saliva

Dry mouth is a common issue for people, especially during the winter time. When your salivary glands can’t keep up and your mouth dries out, your risk for gum disease and tooth decay goes up.

The saliva in your mouth isn’t just for breaking down your food – it also helps keep your mouth clean. Although you’re not always conscious of it, your body is regularly producing saliva to remove bits of food that can cause tooth decay and kill harmful bacteria. When your mouth dries out, it creates an environment where bacteria and tooth decay can increase and cause problems.

A range of yoga poses including twists and inversions help to stimulate saliva production, which keeps your gums and teeth clean and healthy.

Yoga Reduces Gum Inflammation

Inflammation in the body is often a response to cortisol, the stress hormone.

Ways Yoga Can Improve Your Dental Health  

Inflamed gums can be uncomfortable and even painful, and often accompany other oral issues like gum disease and tooth decay. What’s worse, chronic inflammation in your gums can lead to inflammation in the rest of your body, including your neck and jaws.

Reducing cortisol and de-stressing with daily yoga practice can help prevent inflammation throughout your body, including your gums, protecting you from some of the worst oral outcomes.

Mental Health is Dental Health

Practicing yoga can protect your mouth and teeth by

  • Eliminating teeth-grinding and jaw pain
  • Relaxing the muscles in your jaw and neck
  • Improving your posture and alignment
  • Encouraging saliva production
  • Reducing inflammation

However, one of the most overlooked benefits of regular yoga practice for dental health is the support it offers for mental health, which allows most people to care for themselves and their teeth better.

Brushing and flossing don’t take much time or effort, but they are regularly ignored by people who are rushed, stressed, and depressed. Even the basics can seem overwhelming when your mental health is compromised.

By reducing stress, increasing conscious awareness, and strengthening the body, yoga makes daily life activities and self-care easier. Indirectly, improving your mental health and your self-care might be the best thing you could do for your teeth.

Yoga for Your Teeth

If you suffer from teeth and jaw pain and you think yoga might be helpful, you can easily explore some options to see what is right for you.

Improving your posture, relaxing the muscles in your neck, jaws, and shoulders, and inverting the head below the rest of the body are central to supporting oral health. If you can, find a teacher who can answer your questions and offer feedback on your practice so that you can get the best results.

If you can’t do classes, that doesn’t mean you can’t practice and benefit from yoga. Yoga videos are available on YouTube to guide you through sequences that can help you specifically improve your dental health. You can practice at your own speed, at home, and keep your teeth and jaws protected and comfortable.