Teeth Grinding: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment for Bruxism

You’re waking up with a sore jaw every morning. Your teeth are sharp to the touch. There’s no doubt about it: you’re suffering from bruxism.

Bruxism, or as its more prevalently known, teeth grinding, is one of the more common dental conditions in existence, according to this dentist within Queen Creek.

Wondering about treatment for bruxism? Then read on for more information about this condition.

Causes of Bruxism

At this point, physicians aren’t entirely sure what causes bruxism. There are believed to be a variety of factors at play. These factors run the gamut from the physical to the psychological to the physiological to the genetic and more.

Bruxism while awake is often seen as a result of stress or anxiety. The stress or anxiety causes tension in the body, leading the affected individual to clench his or her jaw and apply friction to the teeth.

The cause of bruxism while asleep is a little more difficult to name. Note, though, that it’s generally associated with chewing motions. Make note, also, that those who suffer from bruxism while asleep also often suffer from sleep apnea and other such sleep disorders.

Bruxism Symptoms

The symptoms of bruxism are many. Not all symptoms show up for each sufferer, yet here are the most common symptoms.

Grinding Noises

Does a friend or a family member commonly make mention of grinding noises when they’re around you? If so, bruxism is the likely culprit. When one grinds his or her teeth together, they produce a great deal of friction, leading to a rocky and unpleasant noise.

Chipped Teeth

Are there small fragments missing from the bottoms of some of your teeth? If so, bruxism could be to blame. The more you grind your teeth, the more wear and tear they’ll experience, leading to this sort of deterioration.

Note, however, that chipped teeth aren’t always indicative of bruxism. You could have just chipped your tooth while talking or while playing a sport or while participating in some other activity. That said, it’s something that should be considered.

Flattened Teeth

Not only can teeth grinding lead to chipped teeth but to flattened teeth as well. So, if the grooves in your teeth seem less pronounced than they once were, there’s a good chance that you’re a chronic tooth grinder.

Note, in some cases, this presents itself as sharp teeth. This is particularly true of the teeth on the sides of the jaw.

Tooth Pain

Do your teeth hurt every time you take a bite? Are they getting more and more sensitive to the cold or to heat? If so, bruxism could very well be the cause.

After all, if you’re grinding your teeth together, they’re going to be facing much more trauma than they would be otherwise. This trauma is bound to lead to physical pain.

Jaw Pain

It’s not just tooth pain that you need to look out for. Jaw pain can come about as a result of bruxism as well. This is particularly true if the back teeth are the ones grinding against one another.

Earache

The pain doesn’t necessarily limit itself to the teeth and the jaws. In more extreme cases of bruxism, that pain can spread all the way to the neurological system, resulting in earaches. If you’re suffering from chronic earache, you’re advised to take a close look at your teeth.

Temple-Based Headache

Headaches can arise from bruxism as well, and, in particular, temple-based headaches. So, if you feel that the sides of your head are in perpetual pain, your tooth-grinding habit could be the culprit.

Treatment for Bruxism

There are several treatments for bruxism, some of which are designed to solve minor bruxism and some of which are designed to solve major bruxism.

Psychological Therapy

If your bruxism is only minor and if you only suffer from it while you’re awake, you might be able to benefit from psychological therapy. A therapist can help you to reduce anxiety and stress in your life, helping to release tension in your body, and lowering the risk of teeth grinding.

In some cases, there might even be prescribed medications that can help in relieving stress.

If your bruxism is a little more extreme, or if it occurs while you’re sleeping, you might consider being fitted for a splint or a mouthguard. These entities are used to prevent the teeth from coming together. Often made of acrylic (though sometimes made of other materials), they’re worn like any other mouthguards you’ve ever seen: directly over the teeth.

Dental Treatment

In severe cases of bruxism, affected individuals might actually require dental treatment. In other words, they might need to have their teeth reshaped so as to avoid harsh grinding circumstances. This is also often needed for retroactive treatment or treatment in which damage to the teeth has already been done.

Those who undergo this treatment often receive new crowns. Note, though, that parts of the teeth might have to be sanded down as well.

Jawline Slimming

In some cases, it’s not psychological issues that lead to bruxism. Some individuals are just physically predisposed to grinding their teeth. This is generally because of the way in which their jaws are positioned.

Fortunately, there’s a way to relieve jaw-related teeth clenching. The answer lies in jawline slimming, a non-surgical procedure that narrows the jaw, allowing for reduced friction between the teeth. It also helps to reduce the prominence of the jaw, offering some aesthetic benefits as well.

Seeking Other Such Information?

There’s everything you need to know about treatment for bruxism. Set these treatment methods into action and, soon enough, your teeth grinding will be a thing of the past.

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