Medically known as bruxism, teeth grinding typically takes place while sleeping. It is also possible to subconsciously clinch your jaw or grind your teeth when awake. Fortunately, there are some methods for stopping this activity and the symptoms that it generates.
Teeth grinding can cause a variety of symptoms, such as:
Loose or painful teeth
Broken restorations like crowns and fillings
Pain in the face, jaw and ears
Worn down or flattened teeth
Every case of teeth grinding is different, but here are some commonly used remedies for teeth grinding:
Your dentist can make a custom-fitted mouthguard to help prevent teeth grinding at night while you sleep. This type of device cushions your teeth and prevents them from grinding while you are sleeping.
Custom mouthguards are available in different thicknesses. Your dentist can design one so that it specifically fits the unique contours of your jaw and teeth. Custom mouthguards are normally more comfortable than those that are available over-the-counter and are made from a softer material.
Tongue and Jaw Exercises
Some people suffering from teeth grinding are helped by undergoing certain types of jaw and facial muscle exercises. You can work with a physical therapist who will help you with these exercises so that you can maintain proper jaw alignment.
You have probably heard about Botox’s uses in cosmetic dermatology. The same product is also helpful in some cases of teeth grinding. Botox injections have been found to reduce both the frequency and pain of teeth grinding in treated individuals.
Botox is a safe and effective product containing a type of botulism, which is created in a laboratory under controlled conditions. It works by limiting the activity of injected muscles so that they are unable to contract forcefully. This offers relief to many people dealing with teeth grinding.
The effects of Botox help many people, but the results are not permanent. After a few months, the effects would begin to wear off, and you would need a subsequent treatment to maintain your results.
Teeth grinding can have a variety of causes, and it is not always known what causes a specific case of bruxism. If you know that you are grinding your teeth, and are having negative symptoms, you should first visit your dentist to rule out common causes of teeth grinding. Your dentist can provide you with a physical examination of your jaw and teeth. They may also be able to provide a treatment, such as a custom mouthguard, or recommend that you see a doctor to receive the appropriate treatment.
If you think that your symptoms are caused by teeth grinding, please contact our office at your earliest convenience to schedule a consultation.