People who suffer from bruxism can point to many possible causes. Narrowing down one specific reason for the grinding and clenching of teeth is not always that easy. A visit with our dentist can help you with solutions to ease the discomfort associated with bruxism and repair any damage that has been done.
Quite often grinding or clenching teeth is done during sleep. It is usually done subconsciously and can even become a habit during the day as well. It is also a very misunderstood problem with suspected causes ranging from depression, anxiety, fear, and frustration or to more serious physical diseases.
The symptoms are not definitive either. For some people, they don’t realize they are grinding or clenching their teeth but they suffer from:
Of course, not all of these symptoms need to be present. And having these symptoms does not always point to a diagnosis of bruxism.
One thing is very clear, however. In addition to the discomfort that teeth grinding can cause, the damage to your teeth can be very serious. Grinding can result in wearing down teeth or breaking teeth. This can lead to a malocclusion, or bite misalignment, which can compound the problem and make grinding worse. Broken or cracked teeth can result in needing a dental crown or possibly a root canal.
If you suspect you are grinding or clenching your teeth, your dentist can fit you with a mouth guard designed specifically to fit your teeth. Night guards purchased over the counter don’t always provide the best fit making them uncomfortable. This results in not using them and grinding resumes.
If stress or anxiety is suspected as the leading cause of teeth grinding, you can try exercising, meditation or yoga to try to relieve daily stresses. Medication can be prescribed to help deal with other emotional issues as well.
Avoiding beverages containing caffeine might help. Chewing gum or anything that is not food is discouraged as this provides the muscle memory in your jaws to continue this motion.
Whether you grind your teeth at night or find yourself clenching or grinding during the day, our dentists can help with a diagnosis and solution that will provide relief and the end of this damaging habit. Call our San Antonio office at 210-616-0858 to learn more and to schedule your visit.