Headshot portrait of Leah Harris - Bio-X Undergraduate Fellow
2021 Undergraduate Summer Research Program Participant

Home Department: Psychology
Mentor: James Gross (Psychology)

“Sleep Bruxism and Ideal Affect”

Dentists throughout the world have reported a spike in sleep bruxism complaints from patients throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Sleep bruxism is the grinding and clenching of the teeth at night; impaired regulation of wake-time emotion could lie at the core of sleep bruxism. Drawing from both psychology and physiology, Leah seeks to determine if emotion regulation is significantly impaired in individuals with sleep bruxism, as well as testing its association with wake-time stress, and impaired sleep quality. She is accomplishing this by analyzing longitudinal data from physiological devices pertaining to jaw movement, sleep tendencies, heart rate variability, and daily activity.