When it comes to sleep, orthodontic services can often be of great help. Misaligned teeth can lead to a variety of issues that can impact the quality of your sleep. That’s why orthodontists make appliances that can assist people with certain sleep disorders. Let’s review how your teeth can affect your sleep.
1. Obstructive Sleep Apnea
One of the most common sleep disorders is obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). This condition results from partial or complete obstruction of the airway during sleep. According to the American Sleep Apnea Association, roughly 3% of children will develop OSA. Symptoms of the disorder can include loud snoring, gasping for breath while sleeping, and frequent nighttime awakenings. If left untreated, it can lead to high blood pressure, heart attacks, depression, and even death. Orthodontic services can keep the airway open with appliances such as a mandibular advancement device (MAD). MADs fit over the teeth and gently pull the lower jaw forward. It helps open the airway and reduces snoring.
2. Teeth Grinding
Grinding of the teeth, also known as bruxism, often occurs during sleep. This is caused by various factors such as stress or anxiety and can lead to pain in your jaw, headaches, and teeth damage. Misaligned teeth can make teeth grinding more likely to occur, as the pressure of misaligned teeth can cause your jaw muscles to spasm during the night. As such, orthodontic services can provide braces or Invisalign to properly align your teeth and alleviate any pain or discomfort.
3. TMJ Disorder
TMJ disorder, also known as a temporomandibular joint disorder, is a condition that affects the jaw joints. It can cause pain and limited movement of the jaw. Badly aligned teeth can place extra stress on the TMJ, leading to long-term pain and discomfort. Orthodontic services may recommend braces to help properly align the teeth and reduce TMJ-related pain. The use of a custom night guard can also be beneficial for those suffering from TMJ disorder.
Sleep disorders can wreak havoc on your health. Luckily, your local orthodontist can provide treatment and devices to help alleviate the symptoms of sleep-related disorders. If you’re experiencing any issues with your teeth or jaw that could impact your sleep quality, don’t hesitate to contact our local office. We’ll get you started on the right treatment plan for your situation.