Despite all the downward dogs, the yoga trend is up. 36 million Americans regularly roll out their mats to reap the benefits of this popular practice. From flexibility and focus to strength and stress relief, yoga’s perks are endless. Among the lengthy list are some lesser-known oral health advantages. Find out how yoga can help you namast’ay smiling:
Yoga reduces jaw pain.
Poor posture is one of the main perpetrators of muscle pain. And slouching causes our heads to fall forward and out of line with our spine. This can trigger discomfort in your jaw, and can affect your bite overtime. Jaw pain has been linked to TMJ or temporomandibular disorder, an issue that impacts your ability to eat, talk and sleep. Yoga poses perfect posture, thus helping to take the strain off of your jaw.
Yoga stimulates saliva.
Yoga poses that incorporate proper breathing techniques can stimulate saliva, according to a 2013 study. Saliva is important because it helps wash away bad bacteria you accumulate in your mouth. Saliva production fights foul breath and decreases your risk for tooth decay and gum disease.
Yoga eases inflammation.
When you’re stressed, your body produces more of the hormone cortisol. Mouth bacteria can cause gum inflammation, but chronic stress can worsen this swelling. This harmful compound also increases your risk for gum disease. Because yoga is a proven stress reliever, researchers believe this reduces inflammation in the body.
If you’re having oral health issues, talk to your dentist and see if yoga can help ease your pain.