Bruxism is a term you are probably not familiar with if you’re reading this blog. The idea of grinding one’s teeth while asleep (or awake) has been around since ancient times, and it is still a significant issue to this day. One in four people worldwide is affected by bruxism. Because of its prevalence, many dental practices have made it their newest fad to sell their patients teeth-grinding prevention devices. While these options can help with symptoms, they should not be the only solution. Here’s what you need to know if your dentist thinks you grind your teeth.
It is essential to know that anyone can develop bruxism. If you’ve not experienced this before, there’s a good chance that your dentist may have already identified you as a potential bruxer. After all, patients who experience difficulties with their teeth often have related issues that can impact the health of their teeth and gums, right?
What is the leading cause of bruxism?
The leading cause of bruxism is simply grinding one’s teeth. Bruxing causes fatigue and stress on the jaw muscles, leading to various health problems over time, including temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD) and tooth decay. Not only does bruxing affect the mouth, but it also causes sleep disruption. In other words, you may be grinding your teeth at night and not even realize it.
How do you get rid of bruxism?
Bruxism is typically caused by stress and other factors that cause people to grind their teeth. There are a few ways to reduce the risk of developing bruxism. One way is to keep your jaw in its usual position when you sleep. It’s also important to avoid chewing on hard or sticky things and avert sudden movements like shaking your head or sneezing. Finally, it can be helpful for people with bruxism to get a dentist specializing in oral rehabilitation. These dentists help patients prevent further damage by using braces and other procedures like tooth extractions and nerve blocks that decrease pain from the grinding process.
How do you get bruxism?
The most common cause of bruxism is grinding teeth. This can be caused by stress, anxiety, or simply from reading. The nerves in the jaw are stimulated, and it causes the muscles to contract and relax constantly. This can lead to tooth decay due to a lack of rest for the teeth, which remain under constant pressure for extended periods each day. Another cause of bruxism is a habit called “chinstrap clenching,” where the chin clamps down on top of the upper teeth when you sleep. It may seem harmless, but this habit can lead to various health problems like dry mouth and snoring.
Finally, other causes, such as gum disease or dental work, require checking your teeth repeatedly open over time. These issues result in grinding since stopping without pain and discomfort is challenging. In some cases, bruxism occurs in response to another medical problem causing pain, so your dentist should not necessarily assume it’s just stress-related unless they can identify an underlying condition that might be causing your jaw pain or sensitivity.
Can you fix bruxism?
Yes, there are treatments for bruxism; some are far more effective than others. One of the most effective treatments is wearing a night guard that keeps pressure off the jaw and reduces muscle fatigue during sleep. Another option is to wear a smaller retainer that functions as a night guard but has less metal and plastic. Finally, you can try using an over-the-counter mouthguard with softer material so it won’t irritate your gums or teeth.
If none of these options work, you might need to see a bruxism specialist who can help determine what can be done to alleviate the problem. The good news is that you probably don’t have anything seriously wrong—just something you’ll have to put up with.
How do I stop bruxism during the day?
Since bruxism is so common, most people have a strategy to avoid it during the day. One can employ various methods, but some of the more popular methods include wearing a mouthpiece during the day and keeping your jaw in a particular position with your tongue pressed against the roof of your mouth. If you’re having trouble with this (or any other) method, you may want to consider talking to your dentist about options for therapy or pain relief.
How do I stop clenching my teeth at night without a night guard?
If you find yourself clenching your teeth all night long, there are a few ways to minimize the effects of bruxism. You can start by wearing a bite guard while you sleep or try and do some nighttime exercises that help keep your jaw muscles in check. You might also want to consider consulting with your dentist about getting an appliance known as a mandibular advancement splint that aims to stop or reduce clenching by using an orthodontic device. The device is designed to be worn when you sleep, are chewing, or even at rest, but it’s important to note that it won’t work for everyone!
How common is bruxism?
In a recent study, it was found that around one in ten people have bruxism. That’s pretty common! In the same survey, it was also found that women were more likely to develop bruxism than men, and those who are pregnant or going through menopause are less likely to experience the symptoms of bruxism.
Is bruxism caused by drugs or alcohol?
If you’ve been diagnosed with bruxism, the next step is to consider if it was caused by drugs or alcohol. Many other things can cause bruxism, with only some having a drug or alcohol-related cause. For example, stress, anxiety, and depression can cause people to chew on their hands or objects. It’s not always easy to identify the root of your problem because there are so many potential causes of bruxism—but identifying these causes is essential for treatment purposes!
Does heat help bruxism?
Bruxism is often caused by a lack of sleep, stress, or even pain. In the case of bruxism and tooth decay, heat can be one way to help alleviate the symptoms. For some patients, applying heat can help prevent tooth decay.
This issue is that heating teeth for extended periods can result in thermal injuries. If you’ve been diagnosed with bruxism, there are some things you should consider before subjecting yourself to a heat treatment.
How do you fix bruxism teeth?
The treatment for bruxism teeth is typically a bit different than for someone who has been diagnosed with sleep apnea. You know what to expect if you’ve already received a diagnosis. However, if you are just being told that you have bruxism, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist and get to the bottom of it.
When it comes to fixing your teeth, two approaches can be taken. One is done with braces or mouth guards, and the other is done with jaw surgery. For example, if you don’t want to wear braces but would like the bruxism to stop or at least be significantly reduced in frequency, then your dentist may recommend jaw surgery. If this sounds too extreme for you, your dentist may prescribe wearing braces or using another type of mouth guard.
If you’re looking for a quick fix without getting your teeth fixed more permanently, some steps can be taken to reduce the pain associated with bruxism. The most common way people reduce their pain is by eliminating any triggers that cause discomfort before they bite down. This means avoiding chewing gum, food that sticks in the mouth (like peanut butter), and other triggers like cold drinks and hard candies. It’s also important not to stress out over anything when trying to cure this condition, as stress only worsens things!
Can teeth recover from bruxism?
Bruxism can be pretty painful, so it’s not surprising that you might try to find a way to get rid of your bruxism. Well, as with most things in life, there is a cost for anything you want to do. The most common method for getting rid of bruxism is using dental appliances. These devices are placed on the upper or lower teeth and apply pressure below your jaw while sleeping. It’s important to note that these devices will not correct the underlying cause of your bruxism; they only help relieve symptoms and improve sleep quality.
What does bruxism do to teeth?
Bruxism can be pretty damaging to your teeth. A person is a chronic bruxer may experience pain in their jaw, teeth, and other bodily regions. They may also find that their face hurts after chewing on gum or that the muscles in their jaw ache when they sleep. This can lead to enamel erosion on their teeth, which erodes quicker the more you chew. Bruxism can also increase the risk of developing dental disease by causing damage to the roots of your teeth.
Can bruxism damage your teeth?
Yes, teeth grinding can wear down your teeth. The root cause of your bruxism needs to be addressed. Generally, patients grind their teeth at night because they have an anxiety disorder or a sleeping disorder. You may need therapy to address that core cause and ensure you maintain good sleep hygiene.
How long does it take to cure bruxism?
Bruxism typically takes a few weeks to get over. However, it can take longer if the bruxism is more severe or caused by something else. You may need to change your sleeping habits, such as taking shorter naps or sleeping on your side, and then wait for the symptoms to diminish.
You may have some pain-relieving options available to you as well. The standard treatment for this condition is oral appliances. These are custom-made devices with a wire mesh that goes in between your teeth and keeps them apart at night while you sleep. They create a space between the teeth, preventing grinding while they rest, and then come together when you wake up to give the illusion of having natural teeth again. If the dental appliance doesn’t work for you, you can always engage in other forms of dentistry like Invisalign or tooth implants instead of relying on an oral device alone.
How do I relax my jaw and stop grinding my teeth?
To avoid bruxism, you must relax your jaw as soon as you wake up. The first step is to not open your mouth wide when you wake up, and the second step is to apply pressure on the back of your tongue with your thumb or index finger. You will notice that this pressure will help push forward the lower jaw and prevent it from chewing while you’re asleep. For those who grind their teeth while they sleep, try sleeping in a recliner chair with a pillow positioned under their head (to keep them from falling) and at their feet (to keep them from rolling during sleep). This can significantly affect how much pain they feel during the day.
How can a dentist tell if you clench your teeth when sleeping?
If you are experiencing any tooth grinding, your dentist will be able to tell when you visit. The best way for them to check for bruxism is to take an x-ray of your teeth. If there’s anything in the image, it could signify that you are clenching your teeth while asleep because of bruxism. There are other ways for dentists to determine if you have bruxism: by feeling the tension in your jaw and neck muscles or asking you to close your eyes while they watch your mouth.
When to see a dentist about bruxism
See your dentist if you are dealing with symptoms that prevent sleeping, such as headaches or fatigue. Dental practices can often help with these symptoms and recommend what you need to do for long-term relief. Your dentist should be able to advise you if your disorder needs to be treated by a doctor.
If you have questions or would like to make an appointment to discuss bruxism with our dentists at Soft Touch, contact us today to make an appointment.