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  • 執筆者の写真Naoko Suga











Acupuncture to improve clenching during sleep

Clenching on an unconscious level

If clenching during sleep is a habit, sleep tends to be poor. In addition, although you are not aware of the state of clenching because you are asleep, clenching for hours on end not only strains the back teeth, but also stiffens the jaw, head and neck muscles, which can result in headaches and stiff shoulders.

From my experience with a broken mouthpiece

I have had severe clenching during sleep since I was a child, and in the past, my dentist recommended that I have a custom-made mouthpiece. However, sleeping with the mouthpiece on became even more stressful, and I once broke the mouthpiece as a result of over- clenching it. In the end, the mouthpiece did not fit my sleeping habit, and because I left the clenching untreated, my back teeth were also worn out, and I spent my days suffering from headaches and stiff shoulders.

Acupuncture to relieve clenching

So I recently learned that acupuncture is good for clenching, and around the time I tried acupuncture to relax the masseter muscle myself, my clenching improved considerably. For a long time, I clenched my teeth unconsciously during sleep. I was surprised myself because my masseter muscles were so tight.

When I tried acupuncture for clenching, I realized that it improved not only my facial area but also my headaches and stiff shoulders.

Relax and Sleep

When you sleep clenching, your neck and shoulder muscles also stiffen, and you may find that your pillow does not fit. Since the firmness of pillows is fixed, on nights when you feel that your pillow does not fit, it may be your own fatigue/stress condition that is making you feel this way. It is not that the pillow does not fit, but that clenching during sleep may be behind the problem.

It is good enough to clench tightly only when you are awake and concentrating. When going to sleep, it is important to relax the whole body and loosen both the jaw and the facial area. In addition to acupuncture, massage around the jaw is also effective for clenching, so you should try to improve your clenching as a habit before going to bed.





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