When Nighttime Teeth Grinding Becomes a Daytime Problem

Three-year old boy holds nightguard.Teeth grinding, or bruxism, is a common oral habit. It involves the involuntary action of grinding or clenching the teeth. Unfortunately, this can wreak havoc on your oral health over time. What makes bruxism difficult is that it is most often performed during nighttime sleep, making patients unaware of their habit until they experience the daytime consequences.

While some patients have a bed partner to reveal their noisy teeth grinding habit, many sufferers only realize they grind or clench at night until the following symptoms arise:

  • Morning headache
  • Sore jaw or teeth
  • Neck, jaw or ear pain
  • Worn down teeth
  • Cracked or fractured teeth
  • Frequent cavities due to enamel loss

Bruxism can be caused by a variety of factors, from stress to a bad bite. Nevertheless, bruxism is a habit that can have a serious impact on your smile and overall wellbeing if it is not addressed. The constant pressure and friction that is placed on your teeth and jaw muscles during teeth grinding is simply more than they were designed to handle. In fact, clenching and grinding can put hundreds of pounds of pressure on tooth surfaces. On average, chewing exerts about 20 to 40 pounds of pressure on the teeth, but the pressure from grinding can be as much as 250 pounds or more! This type of exertion does not go unscathed.

Treating Nighttime Bruxism

There’s good news when it comes to grinding your teeth while you sleep. Your dentist can offer you a custom nightguard to protect your teeth and jaw from these extraordinary pressures so that you can still get the sleep your body needs, without the daytime oral health ramifications of bruxism. Dr. Myers of The Dentist Centers can create a digital mold of your teeth with an advanced imaging system and send it to a dental lab to create a comfortable, durable and highly effective nightguard to wear while you sleep. Our office proudly offers a full range of treatments for jaw pain and TMJ issues, including custom appliances, anti-inflammatory medication and even Botox injections to halt bruxism and allow the jaw muscles to heal.

If you are concerned that you are grinding or clenching your teeth during the night, please call our Sandy Springs or Alpharetta office today for advanced bruxism treatment in a friendly, caring environment.

Posted on behalf of The Dentist Centers