Teeth Clenching Symptoms
Most people aren’t aware they are clenching their jaws unless their dentists tell them or they sleep with someone who hears them clenching and grinding. If you wake up in the morning with your teeth and jaw clenched shut with pain in your neck, jaw and teeth that’s a clear sign that you better do something to fix this or you will begin to grind down your teeth and the bone in your jaw.
You are also creating enormous tension into the brain, essentially shrinking and aging your brain. What I always explain to people when they come to see me or to take a class to learn how to fix their TMJ problems is that they did this to themselves. Whatever you have done, you can undo and create new healthier patterns.
Jaw clenching is fairly epidemic in people living and working in big cities. People actually get fit for dental appliances called bite plates to stop damaging their teeth. They can actually bite through several in a year. It’s a great business for dentists, but it doesn’t teach people what to do to change this pattern themselves.
Urge to Clench Teeth
Add the holiday season to a jaw clencher and the clenching gets worse causing headaches, neck pain and soreness throughout the teeth and jaw pain. People who clench tend to have greater levels of tension and tightness throughout their bodies. Telling someone who is an extreme jaw clencher to “let go” is telling him something that his bodies has no idea how to do.
For example , if you are a yoga practitioner and you clench at night, you are basically tightening your entire body and holding yourself back from truly advancing in your practice.
If you are a jaw clencher and you suffer from jaw ache this work is for you. If you are not sure that you clench but you often feel tight in your jaw, head and neck try these suggestions. If you notice a big improvement after doing them, then keep practicing the suggestions that you feel most beneficial for you.
How to Stop Clenching Your Teeth
Simply from talking and eating an enormous amount of impact goes into the teeth and gums. We never really touch our teeth or gums to know they are building impact and stress. This work is simple and very effective for relaxing the gums, teeth and jaw. Don’t race through this. Steady directional pressure takes the tension out of the mouth and begins to bring awareness of what it feels like to be relaxed inside your mouth.
1. Take your thumb and index finger all the way back to the teeth in the upper jaw. Place the thumb in the back of the teeth and gums and the index finger on the gums and teeth in front.
2. Pinch the thumb and index finger against the gum and teeth as far back as possible and pull out and hold. The pressure of the fingers pulling the gum and teeth directly out should be held for 30-45 seconds. Keep pulling out with the fingers as much as the gums can expand out.
3. Release the fingers and bring them forward slightly and again pinch the thumb and index finger into the gum and teeth and pull directly out at the angle of the curve of the jaw. Hold for 30-45 seconds. Release finger and thumb.
4. Move the finger and thumb forward so that you are pulling the teeth and gums straight out to the side you are working. Hold the outward pressure for 30-45 seconds.
5. Rest and feel the effects of this work on the entire side of the body that you worked.
6. Do the same work on the upper case teeth and gums of the other side.
7. When you are done lie on your back and just feel the difference in your mouth, jaw, and face.
8. To do the lower jaw, take the thumb and index finger as far back on the teeth as possible. Apply equal pressure with the thumb and fingers into the gum and then pull directly out and hold for 30-45 seconds.
9. Continue moving the thumb and index finger around to the center front. Stop and feel the effects of the work on this side and then do the same work on the other side. When the entire mouth is done rest on your back and let yourself feel the effects of de-stressing your teeth and gums. I highly recommend doing this once a week to unload the stress the mouth builds up.
For additional reading, this article talks more teeth grinding or bruxism.