The technical name for teeth grinding is bruxism. It is a condition that normally affects people in their sleep and can be aggravated by stress. Over time, a habit of grinding your teeth at night can damage your teeth and jaws. It can cause your teeth to wear down or start to chip. Your jaw may become strained, leading to headaches and pain in the facial muscles.
Diagnosing Teeth Grinding
As it occurs during your sleep, you may be unaware that you are grinding your teeth. Symptoms to look for include pain in the mornings and worn-down teeth. Other people may also hear you grinding your teeth in your sleep if you share a room or sleep near someone else.
Treatment for Teeth Grinding
To protect your teeth and jaw, we can supply you with a night guard. A night guard is much like a mouthguard for sports but designed to be worn at night while you sleep to keep you from damaging your teeth. To create your night guard, we will make an impression of your mouth to ensure a custom fit. When the night guard is ready, you will return to our clinic collect it and for adjustments.
Breaking the Habit
In addition to the night guard, we will offer you advice on how to break the habit. This may include stress-reduction techniques, such as deep breathing, massages, relaxation, yoga, and cognitive behavioural therapy.
You should also avoid clenching your jaw during the day and biting anything other than food. If you ever grind your teeth during the day, stop and think about what might be triggering the habit.
Regular dental checkups are especially important if you grind your teeth. We will check for problems, including cracks and misalignment, and offer treatment to prevent further damage. Leaving the condition untreated can cause a tooth to become loose or even fall out. Seeking treatment early is the best way to ensure you keep all your natural teeth.