Preventing tongue biting during sleep
Preventing tongue biting during sleep is essential.
Not only can tongue biting cause pain and discomfort, but it can also lead to severe complications such as infection or difficulty in speaking. 🗣️
You can't always control tongue biting, but you can take steps to protect your tongue from damage.
Identify and treat underlying causes
By identifying and treating the underlying causes, you can stop tongue biting in sleep at its source.
For example, if an underlying condition such as sleep apnoea is causing you to bite your tongue, treating the sleep apnoea can help relieve the symptoms. 🩺
If a medication is causing tongue biting as a side effect, changing the medication or adjusting the dosage can help.
By addressing the cause, you can prevent biting your tongue in sleep.
It can also help improve your overall health and well-being.
Mouthguards or night guards can help prevent tongue biting during sleep by preventing the jaw from clamping down.
A custom-fitted mouthguard worn during sleep can create a physical barrier between the upper and lower teeth.
This prevents them from coming into contact with the tongue. 🦷
It also reduces the risk of teeth grinding (bruxism) and jaw clenching, which are common causes of tongue biting.
A mouthguard can help you sleep peacefully.
You should not compromise on the fit of your mouthguard.
Make sure you visit a dental office to have your mouthguard fitted for the best results. 👩🏼⚕️
Maintain a healthy weight
Maintaining a healthy weight is essential to prevent tongue biting while sleeping.
Excess weight puts pressure on your airways and can cause them to collapse during sleep, leading to breathing disorders and increased muscle tension. 🫁
As a result, you might inadvertently bite your tongue.
By keeping your weight under control, you reduce both the pressure on your airways and the risk of tongue biting.
Practise relaxation techniques
Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, and yoga can prevent tongue biting during sleep. 🧘🏼♀️
Tension and stress in the body can increase muscle activity and movement during sleep and put your tongue at risk.
Incorporating relaxation techniques into your routine can lower stress levels, reduce muscle tension, and improve sleep quality.
This effectively reduces the likelihood of tongue biting.
Relaxation techniques also have a positive effect on your overall mental and physical well-being.
Avoid sleeping on your back
If you sleep on your back, your tongue can fall into the back of your throat.
This can block your airways and increase the risk of tongue biting.
Sleeping on your side or stomach allows your tongue to remain in a neutral position.
This reduces the risk of tongue biting and makes for a better night's sleep.
It's a small change that can significantly protect your tongue and ensure a peaceful night's sleep.
You'll find side sleeping more comfortable with the right pillow.
Our favourite UK pillows for side sleepers:
When should you seek help for tongue biting?
You must see a doctor if you keep biting your tongue during sleep.
Tongue biting during sleep may be a symptom of an underlying illness or sleep disorder that you should treat. 🏥
A healthcare professional or a neurologist can diagnose the cause and offer appropriate treatment options.
Some underlying conditions, such as sleep apnoea, RMD, epilepsy, and having a swollen tongue, have serious health consequences if they aren't treated.
In addition, repeated biting can cause pain, discomfort, and injury to your tongue.
Therefore, it's essential to see a doctor to address the underlying cause and prevent complications.
If you want to get more information on the underlying causes of tongue biting, you can head to the NHS website and search for the specific condition you're struggling with.
Unfortunately, the NHS has no dedicated studies or information on tongue biting. 😞