Teeth grinding is also known as Bruxism. It is a condition in which a person excessively clenches or grinds the teeth. Some people clench and grind teeth during the day (awake bruxism) while some clench and grind their teeth while sleeping (sleep bruxism). Sleep bruxism is related to sleep-movement disorders because people who grind/clench their teeth while sleeping also have other sleep problems such as pauses in breathing or snoring.

Teeth grinding is harmful because it can result in loss of teeth and fracturing. Your teeth may wear down due to chronic grinding.  When this happens, it may need complete dentures partial dentures, implants, root canal, crowns, bridges to fix the affected teeth. Swear grinding not only damages teeth but it also affects the jaws or worsens temporomandibular disorders TMD / TMJ.

Many people don’t know that they grind their teeth or clench their jaws. Therefore, it is important to know the signs and symptoms to seek regular dental care and to avoid further damage to teeth and jaws.

Following are the signs and symptoms of bruxism:

  •       Chipped or loose fractured or flattened teeth,
  •       Worn out tooth enamel
  •       Face neck or job pain or soreness
  •       Increased insensitivity and tooth pain
  •       Sleep disruption
  •       Dull headache that starts in the temples
  •       Damage caused by chewing inside of the cheek
  •       Sometimes teeth grinding or clenching is loud enough to wake you up

If you notice any of the above-mentioned signs and symptoms make sure you visit your dentist as soon as possible.

What causes bruxism?

Although teeth grinding can cause many problems, the exact causes of it are not completely known. However, some of the causes are mentioned below:

  •       Teeth grinding is also linked to the issues of breathing Airway such a sleep apnea
  •       Jaw posture positions
  •       Abnormal bite
  •       Tooth position
  •       Trauma
  •       Lifestyle activities such as developmental and emotional issues
  •       Repetitive strain
  •       Any dental work that has changed jaw or tooth positions

How often should I replace my night guard for teeth grinding?

Night Guards that are usually worn at night protect your teeth from grinding and clenching.  Although they are made to withstand an excessive force and these are durable and strong, but we all know nothing lasts forever. The same is the case with teeth grinding guards.  It depends on how severely you clench or grind your teeth.  But there are also a few signs that tell you when it is the time to replace your night guards. These signs are given below:

It does not fit properly

When you have been using your night guards for long, the guards become weak and are no longer able to sustain the forceful bite. Therefore, it does not fit correctly. Another reason may be the dental work you recently got done from your dentists such as a new dental filling or veneers.  Thus, due to changes in your dental alignment your night guard is not fitting correctly. As a result, you need to have a new night guard because it should be tight enough so that it doesn’t shift or fall out while you clench or grind your teeth.

Tears or cracks in your night guard

If your teeth grinding is severe, the soft night guard cannot withstand that pressure and become prone to tearing and breaking. In such cases, hard or dual laminate night guards are recommended. If you find any cracks and tears in your night guard, replace it immediately because your teeth get damaged while grinding and there is also a risk of swallowing the pieces of your night guard.

Another reason may be the dental work you recently got done from your dentists such as a new dental filling or veneers. This you can understand now that due to changes in your dental alignment is the reason why your night guard is not fitting correctly. 

Your night guard has changed its color

You must clean your night guard regularly. Your mouth is a wet area which makes it a happy place for bacteria to grow and multiply, therefore cleaning and drying it is important to remove food debris and bacteria. If you don’t do it properly bacteria buildup can change the color of your night guard.

Sores in the mouth when you wake up

 If you don’t see any cracks in your night guard and it also fits correctly, but you wake up in the morning with a sore in your mouth, this can be a sign that you need to replace your night guard.

How does a mouth guard protect your teeth?

If you clench or grind your teeth while sleeping, you should wear a mouth guard that can protect your teeth and jaws. Mouthguards fit correctly according to the shape of your mouth and even out the pressure and protect your upper and lower teeth by creating a physical barrier between them.  This will also reduce the grinding noises that you make at night.

What are some of the treatments to cure bruxism?

Treatment is not essential in many cases.  However, in severe cases, treatment options include medication, dental approaches and therapies. These treatment options prevent further tooth damage and relieve pain and discomfort. Discuss with your doctor or dentist to find out which treatment will work best for you.

Dental approaches

Dental approaches for treating bruxism include mouth guards and dental correction

Medications

Although, the medications are not very effective they may work to relieve pain and discomfort. In some cases, the doctor may prescribe muscle relaxants. Some people grind their teeth or clench their jaws while sleeping because of anxiety or stress.  For such people, antidepressants and anti-anxiety medications are prescribed to help them deal with emotional issues and stress.  In addition to that injections of Botox main help when other treatments are not working.

Conclusion:

Teeth grinding is harmful and also causes discomfort to the person suffering from bruxism.  Therefore, you must visit your doctor or dentist for immediate treatment. Make sure that you get your services from a skilled professional. One of the best clinics that provide services for bruxism is URBN Dental clinic, Houston, TX.  For more details visit the website https://dentisthoustontx.com/.

Summary:

Jaw clenching and teeth grinding also termed as Bruxism are often related to anxiety or stress.  Most people don’t show symptoms but some get a headache and facial pain. It also causes your teeth to wear down over time.  Moreover, most people who clench their jaw or grind their teeth are not aware that they are doing it. 

If you find out that your teeth are sensitive and damaged or experience pain in face or ear, make sure you schedule your visit to a doctor or dentist. The doctor will check the cause of teeth grinding and recommend the treatment that’s best for you.

The treatment options include mouth guards or dental correction and medications such as muscle relaxants, anti-anxiety, and antidepressants.

Mouthguards protect your teeth while sleeping by creating a physical barrier between your upper and lower teeth.  It is important that you clean your mouth guards regularly as well as keep checking the condition of your mouthguard so that it serves the purpose it is made for.

One of the best dental clinics you can get services from is URBN Dental, Houston TX.  You can visit the website https://dentisthoustontx.com/. Contact by calling 34-251-8322 and book your appointment today.

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