Most normal people find themselves occasionally clenching and grinding their teeth. The occasional grinding of teeth which is medically known as bruxism usually does not cause any harm. However, after grinding your teeth for some time, they can get damaged and this can result to other dental complications. Therefore, if your teeth are grinding often, consult an experienced and knowledgeable dentist before your teeth get worn out or fractured.
Symptoms of Teeth Grinding
One of the most common symptoms of clenching and grinding of teeth is experiencing mild or severe headaches. It is estimated that most people who grind their teeth are more likely to experience headaches. Other symptoms include facial muscles enlargement, depressions on the tongue, stiffening of the shoulder causing pain to the ears, TMJ or (temporomandibular joint) discomfort, aching of the muscles and sleep disorders.
Causes of Bruxism
There is no single explanation on what causes bruxism. However, some of the psychological and physical causes can include:
- Emotions such as anger, anxiety, tension or frustration
- Having abnormal teeth alignment either on the upper or lower jaw or both
- Responding to pain especially from an ear-ache or from teething in young children
- Sleep apnea among other sleeping problems
- Reflux of the stomach acid into the esophagus
- Complications from other conditions including the Parkinson’s disease
- Focusing or coping tactic
- Teeth Grinding Treatment
Because teeth grinding has different causes, the cure for your condition will depend on the cause. Your dentist will conduct a comprehensive exam and create a treatment plan for you.
One of the best ways of protecting your teeth when you are suffering from bruxism is by wearing an occlusal appliance. These appliances have been given many names but they all serve the same purpose. Some of the common names include bite plates, occlusal splints, night guards, occlusal bite guards, and bruxism appliances among many others. These appliances are custom made from plastic and are placed over the top or bottom part of your teeth. When you wear an occlusal appliance, you will protect your teeth from jaw muscle pain and TMJ. These appliances are considered as the treatment of choice for people suffering from bruxism and they should be worn during bedtime.
Mandibular Advancement Devices
Other devices that are used to treat bruxism are called mandibular advancement devices and they are also custom made. They are designed to fit over the top and bottom teeth. The devices bring the mandible forward and they are recommended especially if a sleeping disorder is the primary cause of your teeth clenching and grinding. The device is used to control sleep apnea and snoring. Therefore, if the cause of your teeth grinding is from sleep apnea, the mandibular advancement device is the best treatment option.
In case anxiety is the main cause of your bruxism condition, it is recommended that you get treated through behavior management. This can include meditation, relaxation techniques, psychoanalysis, and hypnosis. Hypnosis has been found to have long-term benefits. However, you can combine the use of occlusal appliances and behavior modification to help you recover quickly.
An evaluation by a dentist is necessary for you to be able to put an end to your teeth grinding. After examining you, he or she will implement for you a treatment plan. Book here: http://www.yoursmiledentalcare.com/bookings.php