Just about everyone has experienced it: the sensation of teeth vibrating, with or without hearing an accompanying sound. Your dentist might tell you this is caused by a dry mouth and recommend that you avoid drinking liquids before brushing your teeth. But is this really what causes those irritating vibrations?

Studies have shown that these vibrations are not caused by a dry mouth or the act of swallowing. They are actually triggered by specific frequencies within certain sounds – so listen at your own risk! Certain consonants seem to create more vibration in our teeth than others and should be avoided when speaking in front of a crowd. Speaking is not the only way to trigger vibrations, as chewing and swallowing can also cause them.

This was clearly demonstrated in a study conducted by researchers at the University of Granada in Spain. The study focused on two groups of people who were asked to observe a computer screen to watch two virtual characters talking. While one group listened the other group munched on crackers and watched a video about health benefits of red wine – pretty obvious selection, eh?

The rapid vibration rates and sound level associated with both words produced similar responses from the listeners and led the researchers to conclude that their findings suggest that dental vibration is a by-product of speech rather than a primary drive for sound production.

To test this, a similar experiment was done with a different group of people and the results were the same. The researchers concluded that the sound-induced vibrations in our teeth can be triggered by specific resonant frequencies within certain sounds, not by changing the air pressure or volume of speech.

While it is possible that these vibrations are triggered by frequencies within speech or food sounds, they do not seem to be primary stimuli involved in speech perception or control. Dissolving foreign bodies in your mouth may also trigger these vibrations.

So, what causes tooth vibration?

A Spanish study reported that certain consonants trigger specific frequencies in the sound resonance range and may create vibrations within our teeth. Researchers attributed this to the eccentricity of the jaw oscillations of palatal-velar and labial consonants .Resulting frequencies between 20 and 100Hz are strong enough to be detected by human beings. They can also cause vibrations within our teeth. Even chewing apparently creates vibrations in our teeth – fast chewing seems to create more vibration than slow chewing. The weak point is where the gum meets the tooth.

The Professionals Do This When Vibrating Teeth

When your teeth start vibrating when you talk, or you experience a strange feeling in your head, it can be alarming. You may wonder what the problem is and why this happens. When it comes to the teeth, there are many causes that leads to vibrating teeth including tooth decay, gum disease, abscessed tooth and many more. What usually happens when someone has gotten their teeth worked on before is that they would only get the root canal done. Once all of the infection is removed from a tooth it can be made perfect again but with time and some effort; however if this person didn’t get any root canal treatment then they could actually cause themselves more damage by continuing to chew on their tooth where the infection was once present. This is why you should always make sure that your teeth are thoroughly checked and cleaned before you try to make any kind of treatment for them. At the same time, an injury or a dental disease can cause your teeth to vibrate.

Another option is the use of nitrous oxide or laughing gas during dental treatment. It helps to relax people and also eases their tooth pain. Some have overcome their fears of dentistry because of it as well. Teeth grinding usually accompanies the vibration sensation in the head; however not always in all cases because this has also been caused by stress as well. Those with bruxism, or teeth grinding, usually get it when they are under a lot of stress. Some would even grind their teeth during sleep as well.

Vibrating Teeth: The Most Important Thing You Need To Know

I recently took a buy-one-get-one free offer on teeth whitening strips from Target, and the minute I got home I realized that I had made a terrible mistake. They weren’t dental strips. They were vibrating toothbrushes–the kind you put for 20 minutes in your mouth and then turn off so they never stop vibrating again. For $20 dollars? It’s almost impossible to find much of anything online about how to use them, so while it might seem like an easy profit to make with no investment, these things are actually dangerous and can cause irreparable damages to your teeth.

So if you plan on trying this yourself, here’s what I learned:

-Using a toothbrush the way it’s supposed to be used will cause your teeth to become visibly whiter. A good place to start is with a small test strip, then proceed from there.

-You should know how to take teeth whitening off and on, as it’s easy to burn or damage regions of your teeth with these things.  You should also know how to hold the brush correctly, as even just resting a finger in the cutout handle can break your finger.

-The main problem with these things–and why they seem incredibly cheap–is that they’re incredibly powerful. While most toothbrushes are meant to deliver an even amount of pressure all over your teeth, that’s not what these things do. Instead, they have one set of bristles for each side of your mouth, and the sides crisscross in a way that ensures that you’re getting direct pressure for both the top and bottom rows.  This is useful if you want to use the brush on one side only, but it’s incredibly damaging when used as intended.

-Your teeth should never be forced into anything they can’t handle, nor should they be vibrated over any long period of time (especially with this type of brush). 

Teeth sensitivity is no joke, and should not be taken lightly. Not everyone’s teeth are going to get more sensitive, but it’s important to know how much too late.  As someone with teeth that were sensitive before, I can tell you that even a slight increase in sensitivity is an issue (and only got worse from there).

-Mouth pain is NOT normal. If your mouth feels tight or like it’s being crushed by something else, stop.  It doesn’t matter if whitening strips sound harmless–they’re not.