Dr S.Banković, Dr V. Mirić, Dr I. Ristić

Do You Sleep Peacefully?

Peaceful and high-quality sleep is essential to ensuring that we are able to function well during the day, for productivity and performing our daily obligations, for the health of brain and heart, for strengthening the immune system, but also for a fresh and beautiful appearance. That’s why you mustn’t let anything disturb your sleep!

In order for you to have the strength required for all your work and private obligations, a beautiful smile that’s captivating and disarming, but also high-quality and revitalising sleep, be sure that your New Year’s resolutions include regular dental check-ups.

Enjoying a peaceful night’s sleep doesn’t depend solely on how tired you are, whether your day was stressful, whether your bed is comfortable or whether you bought a new, warm blanket.

Breathing calmly and moderately while sleeping, without snoring, has a significant impact on quality of sleep. Studies have shown that snoring and mouth breathing during sleep contribute to reducing oxygen intake to insufficient levels, preventing the brain from nourishing itself and resting during the night, which is why we often wake up feeling more tired than we were when we went to bed.

Mouth breathing is linked directly to improper growth of the teeth and jaws. Failure to recognise and correct this issue on time can result in numerous structural changes. A gummy smile, overlapping teeth, chronic gingivitis, but also the loss of the sense of smell, are just some of the problems that can be caused by mouth breathing. People who breathe through the mouth have their quality of life diminished by frequent tonsillitis, halitosis and snoring, while the aesthetics of their smile are also ruined.

Despite the fact that snoring is very common, studies have shown that it is more commonplace among men and people who are overweight. Sleeping on your back additionally contributes to the position of the lower jaw and tongue falling back, which worsens snoring.

Fortunately, a solution to this problem exists and is represented in the development of individual devices intended to expand the upper respiratory tract and allow the unobstructed flow of air. Wearing this light, comfortable and convenient device either greatly reduces or completely eliminates snoring.

A hectic lifestyle prevents many people from allocating time for themselves and their oral health, which is why some people cover hidden problems in their mouths for extended periods

The modern lifestyle – especially for businesspeople – can often be boiled down to processing large flows of information throughout the day; an unwavering desire to achieve more, the constant setting of new goals and tasks that are sometimes difficult to achieve, appended by private obligations and concerns, all of which leaves us without any opportunity to rest during the day. And when that constant stress spills over into the night with the same degree of intensity, it often manifests as the clenching, gnashing or grinding of teeth.

Nocturnal grinding causes tension in the muscles of the face, head and neck, while waking up brings relief by stopping the anguish. For people who suffer from grinding, waking up only brings fatigue and tension headaches, due to the orofacial muscles having been active throughout the night. Long-term grinding results in the visible wearing of enamel, which results in the increased sensitivity of teeth. Grinding can also lead to a reduction in the height of the premaxilla jaw bones and pain in the jaw joints.

A hectic lifestyle prevents many people from allocating time for themselves and their oral health, while some people even cover hidden problems in their mouths for extended periods, ignoring the discomfort of oversensitive teeth. This problem sometimes worsens, developing from a sensation of discomfort to severe nighttime pain that disrupts a peaceful night’s sleep. The exhaustion and sleeplessness that occur after a night spent struggling with toothache are an additional cause of irritation and stress that only worsen with each passing day.

The lack of one or more teeth also presents a specific problem, as food that’s poorly processed in the mouth has a negative impact on the digestive system, causing stomach ache and loss of appetite. A significant percentage of people also feel compelled to brush their teeth as soon as they rise in the morning, in order to prevent their partner from experiencing the unpleasant morning bad breath that results from gum disease.

People who breathe through the mouth have their quality of life diminished by frequent tonsillitis, halitosis and snoring, while the aesthetics of their smile are also ruined

Whether by coincidence or not, many people desiring a break and a good night’s sleep book a room in top hotel with a pool and a king-sized bed for their annual leave, but they also bring their unpleasant toothache with them. However, relief from toothache and the discomfort that comes from an oral cavity can only be achieved in one way: by visiting the dentist, with regular check-ups and the high-quality restoration of not just one tooth, but rather detailed dedication to the entire orofacial system.

The advantage of contemporary dental practises lies in the fact that diagnostics and treatment utilise modern digital diagnostic tools, both for diagnosing tooth decay/cavities and for the virtual planning of orofacial system rehabilitation. The patient is thus able to properly perceive their problem, check out the future appearance of their smile prior to any major reconstruction, and enter into the implementation of agreed treatment plans without any fear or apprehension.

Considering that we are entering a new year and new beginnings, be sure to include two mandatory regular dental check-ups in your annual planner. Let this be your first step towards tranquil, high-quality and restful sleep.

Nada Popović Perišić, Ph.D., professor emeritus

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