Can Proper Stimming Reduce the Risk of Dental Problems in Autistic People?

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It’s possible to reduce harmful forms of stimming by focusing on healthy and safe forms. You can find more information in wikiHow. Would it also benefit autistic people who clench their teeth during the day?

Recently, during my dental check up, some signs of teeth clenching such as gum recession and worn surfaces were noted. I recalled daytime teeth clenching in the past few months. Years ago, I experienced daytime teeth clenching too.

My guess is that teeth clenching can be a form of stimming. It’s more subtle than rocking or hand flapping. You can clench your teeth while eating without people noticing it. In healthy chewing, our teeth rarely touch while chewing.

Since the pressure to stim can eventually get too high that we must stim in one way or another, how do autistic people camouflage so well that they’re diagnosed late or never? Is it possible that they stim in subtle ways or stim in ways that look socially acceptable instead?

Besides teeth clenching, other subtle forms of stimming that I do include squeezing my eyes shut, jerking my head, walking or running on the edge of my foot which may cause stress fractures over time, and flexing certain muscles sometimes to the point of soreness. You can look away while when your stims involve your facial muscles. When running or walking, if you squeeze your glutes while your legs move back, it’s hardly noticeable to other people once they reach their range of motion.

It’s hard for me to imagine avoiding both obvious and subtle forms of stimming for a few hours till I get home when there’s pressure to stim one way or another.

I thought I had Tourette Syndrome. Some people who pointed it out called it tics. If different forms of stimming are used, does that mean the person’s autism or need to stim was outgrown?

Since missing teeth and dental restorations are expensive, we should find a way to stop teeth clenching.

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Can Chocolate Affect Sleep (Based on Sleep Data)

For the sleep data, chocolate was consumed around 3 pm the day before. The quantity was only two small chocolate pieces.

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Interestingly, only 18 minutes was spent in REM sleep.

More sleep data may be needed to draw a conclusion whether chocolate affects sleep quality. Other factors may have affected it which includes:

  • Magnesium supplementation which may improve deep sleep.
  • Milk chocolate which has less caffeine than dark chocolate, tea, or coffee?
  • Sleep start was about half an hour later than the previous night’s.
  • The last time chocolate was consumed was months ago which may affect tolerance to its caffeine. Mineral levels may also affect sleep.

First Day of Sleep Tracking with the Fitbit Charge 2

I used the Fitbit Charge 2 to track my sleep. It can actually report how much time was spent in the sleep stages.

When I was shopping for the Fitbit, I thought that being able to detect sleep stages was a strong selling point because it’s an area that I need to work more on. It was able to detect sleep stages because it has a heart rate monitor.

Here are the screen shots:

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With accurate information about your sleep, you can find out what affects your sleep.

Ideas for experiments include:

  • Number of steps per day
  • Duration of exercise at different intensities or power or heart rate zones
  • Timing of exercise
  • Aromatherapy
  • Maffetone method
  • Traditional base training
  • Sweet spot base training
  • Resistance training
  • Number of days of exercise per week
  • Workout splitting
  • Brain exercises
  • Nutritional supplements
  • Recovery workouts (exercise intensities that you don’t consider as exercise)
  • Light therapy intensity, duration, and timing
  • Naps
  • Maximum amount of caffeine you can take without affecting your sleep
  • Super foods
  • Chamomile
  • Lavendar
  • Herbs
  • Sleep aids
  • Sleep schedules

How would they affect your REM sleep, deep sleep, light sleep, night time awakenings, and sleep onset?

Possible Overtraining while doing Interval Training 3 Times a Week

I suspect that I’ve overtrained while doing base training on TrainerRoad. Now I’m putting my training on hold.

That means you may have to wait for a while before seeing more fitness test results from my blog. If I really overtrained and I recovered from it, my performance should actually increase!

I started sweet spot base training last October. It has intervals using the zones sweet spot, threshold, and VO2 max. Near the end of the three months, I felt less fresh after each workout than in the earlier part of training.

I also had other symptoms such as increased frequency of colds, increased awareness of heart beats, reduced sleep quality and quantity, and those that are confused with improvements.

If you suspect overtraining, you should pay more attention to how you’re exercising. Even trips that aren’t considered to be workouts count such as walking to work. Do you push too hard uphill or accelerating from a stop?

It may not seem like it’s possible to overtrain so easily especially while base training. It’s likely that before using TrainerRoad, I had some degree of overtraining before from pushing too hard on most of my rides. I coasted a lot too which means there wasn’t enough endurance training in the first place.

My guess is that if base fitness is required for interval training, I wasn’t fit enough for them. In part 2 of sweet spot base and the FTP tests, threshold and VO2 max intervals were done.

Dr. Maffetone has an article about overtraining. According to its comments, activities should be limited to very light intensity. That means the MAF HR may still be too high. It can take months to recover!

My guess is that active recovery counts which means zone 1 can be used. If your FTP is 200W, then your maximum power is 110W which means 25 km/h on the flat assuming that you don’t stop!

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If your bike rides are truly recovery rides, they will be so easy that you won’t feel like you’ve exercised. Replacing your bike gears to decrease its gear ratio make hill climbing easier. The largest cassette on MEC so far is 11-46. Dismounting is another option. A heart rate monitor can remind you to stay in the recovery zone.

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I’ve also supplemented with magnesium. It’s good for sleep and stress reduction which are important for recovering from overtraining. Stress depletes magnesium and heavy exercise is a source of stress which means it can create a vicious cycle. Hopefully it will speed up recovery.

Autistic people seem to be at a higher risk of magnesium deficiency for some reasons. Since it can’t be outgrown, it makes sense why adults are at a higher risk as well and why I should take it. Wearing a non-autistic mask does nothing to magnesium status even if you see that the person looks non-autistic 99% of the time.

Second FTP Test on TrainerRoad

I have finished Sweet Spots Base I and my second 8 minute FTP test on TrainerRoad. Here’s the data from Strava and TrainerRoad.

Strava data

strava data

TrainerRoad data

TR data

According to the tests, my FTP increased from 182W to 203W or 11% in six weeks. It’s possible that some of the improvement was caused by using a fan which decreased my HR significantly.

For the second interval, I increased the gearing and noticed that my wattage was higher even though my HR stayed the same. Notice that the cadence was lower. I may have to improve my pacing . If the workouts are still too easy, I might raise the intensity by 3 or 4 percent.

I’m now on Sweet Spot Base II. Compared to the first part, it has more threshold, VO2 max, and anaerobic intervals.