To understand how to deal with bruxism, you first must define the dental ailment. Some people do not even know they have the condition. Bruxism is a term used for grinding and clenching the teeth. It often occurs during the night when the patient is asleep. Therefore, the patient may be unaware they are gnashing their teeth until they discover the damage the condition has caused.
How Bruxism Impacts a Person's Oral Health
Bruxism can cause a range of oral health issues, some of which may include excessive wear on the teeth, broken restorations or teeth, strain on the soft tissue or joint of the jaw, or cracks in the dental enamel. You may be grinding your teeth at night, unaware, if you have sensitive teeth, tooth indentations on your tongue, headache, jaw joint, ear pain, or jaw stiffness when you eat. If some of your teeth or restorations are wobbly, you need to schedule a dental exam right away.
Treating a Problem with Bruxism
Whether you experience bruxism in the day or at night, you need to determine the underlying cause to treat the condition. People can experience bruxism if they feel overly stressed, angry, or anxious, have problems concentrating, or have a nutritional deficiency. Dental misalignment can also cause a person to clench and grind their teeth unwittingly. If you suspect you clench and grind your teeth at night or you have noticed some dental problems that can be attributed to bruxism, give us a call to have your teeth x-rayed and examined. By taking this step, we can assess the extent of the damage. In turn, we may recommend that you wear a mouth guard at night to protect your teeth or take up stress-reducing exercises. Some of these activities may include daily walks or yoga. It also helps to reduce your intake of caffeine. In more severe cases, we may suggest patients receive cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT makes you aware of the stress triggers that make you grind and clench your teeth.
We can help you overcome a problem with bruxism. Call us today to arrange an appointment for a comprehensive exam and consultation.