Teeth Grinding and Bruxism Treatment
Bruxism refers to the habit of teeth grinding. Many people may grind their teeth from time to time with little to no damage. However, those who continually grind their teeth can cause serious damage to their teeth, and other oral health complications can arise.
It isn’t just teeth grinding, though. Bruxism also refers to just about any type of forceful contact between the teeth. It may be loud grating or silent clenching. In any case, excessive forceful contact can cause severe damage to your oral health. In many cases, people aren’t aware they’re doing it. Some suffer from bruxism because they experience it in their sleep.
Both adults and children can suffer from bruxism. Alcohol, drugs, and certain sleep disorders can exacerbate this condition, making it worse. Children usually develop bruxism as a result of a cold or infection. Pain from teething or earaches will induce teeth grinding in toddlers and children.
What causes teeth grinding?
The cause of bruxism is not entirely known, but researchers are still learning more about advancing bruxism treatments. However, many believe that increased stress and anxiety can greatly affect how often and how severely you grind your teeth. Having an abnormal bite, missing, or crooked teeth can also contribute to teeth grinding.
What are the dangers of bruxism?
Chronic teeth grinding can cause serious oral health issues. Grinding can result in tooth fractures, loosening of teeth, or the loss of teeth. Grinding over years without treatment can wear the teeth down to stumps, exposing the second layer of tooth structure. This condition may require dental bridges, dental crowns, root canals, dental implants, or possibly dentures.
Bruxism is not only detrimental to your oral health, but it can also be damaging to the jaw. Teeth grinding can result in hearing loss, change in appearance in the face, TMD, chronic pain, headaches, and sore muscles.
Solutions for teeth grinding
The good news is there are plenty of bruxism treatment options available. For example, your dentist can fit you for an occlusal or night guard. This will protect your mouth from bruxism while you sleep. To cease teeth grinding completely, it is important to treat the teeth grinding triggers.
If stress is causing your bruxism, ask Dr. Balle or Dr. Guild about stress reduction techniques and relaxation dentistry options the next time you’re in the office. Exercise, stress counseling, or prescription medicines may help reduce how often or severely you grind your teeth.
You may also want to try out Botox or other facial esthetics and rejuvenation services we offer at Balle & Associates. Derived from a neurotoxin, Botox can put the facial muscles as ease, making involuntary bruxism a thing of the past.
More tips for stopping bruxism
When you aren’t at the dentist’s office, you may want to look into some of the things that might be making your bruxism a little bit worse. With that being said, here are some things to avoid and just generally work on at home:
- Cut back on caffeine (coffee, soda, tea).
- Avoid alcohol, as it increases the intensity and severity of bruxism.
- Avoid parafunctional habits, as in you shouldn’t chew on anything that isn’t food.
- Try to relax your jaw before sleeping. Try using a warm washcloth on the face at night.
If you wake up with a sore jaw or teeth, look into bruxism treatment, as it’s likely this is what you’re experiencing.
Bruxism Treatment in Las Vegas
Balle & Associates offers all kinds of treatment options for bruxism. Just schedule a consultation with either Dr. Balle or Dr. Guild and they can make a plan for you and your teeth grinding situation. Call today!