Dental Occlusion Can Influence Standing Balance

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Sonia Julià-Sánchez, PhD
Universitat de Barcelona

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Over the last few years, a growing interest has focused on the potential correlation between the stomatognathic system and the body balance. While this relationship is still a subject for debate, it is well known that sensory information contributes differently on the postural control regulation depending on the conditions of the surface area. Therefore, we hypothesized that dental occlusion may contribute differently on the body balance control depending on the stability condition (stable versus unstable) and that influence might be more evident in fatigue conditions due to reorganization of the sensory information sources.

In the current study we aimed to determine whether:

(i) dental occlusion influences body balance in stable and unstable surfaces, and

(ii) the influence of dental occlusion on the balance control comes strongly into effect under fatigue conditions.

Our results showed that dental occlusion influenced balance control, at unstable level, both at rest and fatigue condition. However, when measuring at stable level, the influence of dental occlusion only reached significance in fatigue condition.


MedicalResearch.com: What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Our results lead to speculation that the afferent signals from dental occlusion may contribute most effectively in the process of balance control when more external perturbations are present (i.e. surface instability and muscle fatigue). It would be important for athletes and people showing idiopathic balance disorders to consider an evaluation of the dental occlusion condition.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Although without irrefutable evidences of a nonspecific effect, we reported in our study that dental occlusion conditioned postural stability at both unstable conditions and fatigue. The study of the influence of dental occlusion on the balance control under external perturbations can be a promising field for new experimental research.

MedicalResearch.com: Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: Our study adds a new insight in the topic of the relationship between dental occlusion and body balance, suggesting the influence of other external variables -in this case unstable surface and fatigue- in this relationship.

MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.

Citation:

Sonia Julià-Sánchez, Jesús Álvarez-Herms, Hannes Gatterer, Martin Burtscher, Teresa Pagès, Ginés Viscor. Dental Occlusion Influences the Standing Balance on an Unstable Platform. Motor Control, 2015; 19 (4): 341 DOI:10.1123/mc.2014-0018

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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