Did you know that March is Sleep Awareness Month? We know that sleep supports a healthy immune system, combats disease, and boosts your mood. But did you realize that orthodontic treatment could be a solution to some sleep woes? In fact, orthodontists can help you catch up on z’s by correcting issues with your teeth and bite. In honor of the month, we’re raising awareness about how your sleep and smile are interconnected.
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is a common but serious condition where a person repeatedly stops breathing during sleep due to their airway collapsing. In response, the body wakes up so breathing can resume. This cycle continues to repeat itself upwards of 400 times per night. Over time, sleep apnea is dangerous for heart health and leads to daytime fatigue. Fortunately, orthodontics can treat and sometimes prevent this serious condition!
Orthodontists don’t just move teeth. In addition to correcting the position of teeth, they also guide facial growth, including the jaw and palate. Orthodontics can positively impact sleep apnea by influencing facial growth to ensure the airway stays open.
Have you ever woken up with a sore jaw? Bruxism could be to blame! With nighttime bruxism, a patient will grind or clench their teeth as they sleep. This habit wears down enamel, weakens teeth, and can lead to soreness or headaches. The pressure can also cause chipping, fracturing, tooth attrition, and misalignment.
Fortunately, orthodontics may be a suitable treatment, depending on the causes of your grinding. A misaligned bite or crooked teeth can exacerbate damage from bruxism and increase the likelihood of it happening. Treating those orthodontic issues with braces or aligners can help you enjoy a healthier smile and better quality of life.
Mouth breathing and snoring
Like sleep apnea, mouth breathing or snoring could indicate a constricted airway. When someone breathes through their mouth, the mouth dries out and prevents saliva from washing away bacteria. A dry mouth can cause several oral health problems, including a higher risk of inflammation, dental decay, and bad breath. Even snoring is connected with your smile! Overbites are a common cause of snoring. Orthodontists can open up the airway and nasal passages, correct your bite, and promote healthy nighttime breathing by using appliances like braces or aligners.
Get the smile (and sleep) you deserve!
Our orthodontists can set up healthy smiles and healthy nights with advanced treatment options! Interested in getting a healthier smile? Call our Hutta & Hutta Orthodontics team. Until then, sweet dreams!