It is normal for teeth to shift a little over time. But if your teeth have begun to shift for no apparent reason, you are probably worried. Missing teeth is one of the most obvious causes of shifting. But if you still have all of your teeth, then something else is to blame for the shifting.
Teeth shift for many reasons. And if your teeth have slowly moved out of position over time, the following habits could be to blame.
1. Sleeping on One Side
If you sleep on your side, then this could be one reason that your teeth are shifting. This is especially true if you favour one side over the other. The pressure of sleeping on your face for several hours a night can slowly push your teeth out of alignment. And if you sleep on a hard surface, the effect will be even more pronounced.
Though this movement will take months and year to occur, eventually, you'll notice a distinct difference in the position of the teeth on your favoured side. Try to use a soft pillow, or train yourself to sleep in a different position to slow the movement of your teeth.
2. Resting on Hands
Just like sleeping on one side can move teeth, resting your face on a hand can also move the teeth on that side, especially if this is a common habit of yours. Braces move teeth via a constant force that pushes teeth through the jawbone. The movement is gradual but constant. Resting on your hands can provide a similar force to that applied by braces.
3. Grinding Teeth at Night
Many people grind their teeth at one time or another during sleep. Grinding occurs when teeth aren't aligned properly. While you rest, your brain tries to find a comfortable resting position for your teeth, but if just one tooth is misaligned, your jaw will move constantly. This force pushes your teeth out of alignment.
Stress is also a cause of grinding teeth at night. If you are stressed and not getting enough sleep, this could be causing you to grind your teeth at night. Years of stress, then, can cause your teeth to shift.
4. Shrinking Lower Jaw
The lower jaw shrinks over time too. Because of the change in the size of your lower jaw, inevitably, your teeth crowd together, especially at the front of your mouth. As a result, your lower teeth will likely move out of position somewhat even if you don't have the aforementioned habits.
If your teeth have moved over time, your dentist can help you to diagnose the cause. Once you diagnose the cause, you can treat the cause and correct the misalignment with the right dental treatment. Reach out to a local dentist today for more information.