If you have a dull, constant headache or sore jaw when you wake up or if your partner/roommate tells you you’re making loud grinding noises in your sleep, you might be grinding your teeth without even realizing it. However, this sometimes unnoticeable activity could lead to very noticeable issues.
The medical term for grinding your teeth is Bruxism. Because most people with bruxism only grind their teeth in sleep, many people do not realize they have bruxism. If you suspect you grind your teeth at night, talk to your Dental Care Center dentist. He or she will be able to examine your mouth for signs of bruxism.
What’s The Harm?
Teeth grinding can cause fracturing, loosening, or loss of teeth. It can even wear your teeth down to nearly nothing. In this case, bridges, crowns, or dentures may be needed to restore/replace the teeth. In addition, chronic grinding can also affect your jaw and cause a change in the appearance of your face.
What Can I Do About It?
An easy solution is asking your dentist to fit you with a mouthguard. This will protect your teeth while you sleep. In some cases, your dentist may recommend taking a muscle relaxant before you go to bed each night.
Bruxism is often caused by stress or sleep disorders. If you grind your teeth due to stress, ask your doctor about options to reduce stress. If you’re grinding due to a sleeping disorder, treating the sleeping disorder may eliminate or reduce your grinding.
What If My Child Grinds His/Her Teeth?
Teeth grinding is not unusual in children. It is not usually a damaging habit because children’s teeth and jaws change and grow so quickly. Typically, treatment for kids is not required. However, if your child’s teeth grinding concerns you, you should ask your child’s dentist about potential causes and possible solutions.
Make an appointment with Dental Care Center today to discuss bruxism causes and treatment options.