Teeth Chattering

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amandastokes
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2018 11:36 pm

Teeth Chattering

Post by amandastokes »

Hi everyone! I had a student in the past who used to experience a chattering of her teeth (automatic spasm of the jaw) whenever she would fold forward in poses such as caterpillar or dragonfly, sometimes even folding down in deer.

Any insight as to what is going on here?

Thank you!

Amanda
Bernie
Posts: 1194
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2006 2:25 am
Location: Vancouver

Oromandibular dystonia

Post by Bernie »

That is very unusual. I have never seen a student do this before so don't have first hand experience with it, but the first thing to do in any case of something weird happening is to figure out the cause. Chattering teeth is quite normal if you are cold (and Yin Yoga is usually done without much heat) but I doubt that is the cause here. So, what is causing it? It can happen due to an infection but that would only happen when the body is fighting the infection not every time a student does a forward fold in yoga. If chattering is always happening, then we could rule out infection.

The other cause is called oromandibular dystonia. Dystonia is a movement disorder that can arise in many areas of the body, but in this case it is happening in the jaw. It could be due to serious underlying neurological conditions like Parkinsons or a disease like Wilson's Disease.

If this is a concern and/or keeps happening, I would suggest your student get it checked (by a doctor, not a yoga teacher) and make sure there is nothing serious going on. She can also do some research at the Dystonia Medical Research Foundation website.

Good luck!
Bernie
amandastokes
Posts: 3
Joined: Tue Dec 11, 2018 11:36 pm

Post by amandastokes »

Thank you, Bernie.

I don't believe it is a disorder as it seems to only happen to my student during forward folds. I'm guessing it's more along the lines of the shaking that can happen during active stretches (like when you stretch your hamstring in a strap, many students shake). Although she's forward folding more passively - maybe it doesn't matter if it's active or passive. If there are fascial lines that run from the roof of the mouth all the way down the intestinal tract and all these tissues connect down to the legs eventually, then it could be a stretch effect that happens to shake up in her jaw. Does that make sense?

That's the best i can do for this case so far.

Thanks,

Amanda
sam
Posts: 8
Joined: Mon Apr 01, 2013 11:21 am

I have the same issue

Post by sam »

I posted here a few years ago about the same issue. I have the same reaction when I hold happy baby or saddle for too long. My body goes cold and i get the shivers, teeth chatters for a minute or so.
A similar thing happened when I had an extremely painful injury. The nurse at the hospital explained it had to do with blood pressure. So this could be one suggestion.
My other guess is the nervous system is being overstimulated.
I've continued with my practice without any issues but this happens once in a while but please let me know if you figure it out!
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