We have little control of what we do in our sleep. Accordingly it can be hard to break any sleep habits we develop. Bruxism, or teeth grinding, can be a particularly detrimental sleep habit to pick up. While identifying bruxism can be a relief for the sufferer, there is often little treatment other than reducing stress levels.

Symptoms

Many people grind their teeth for a while before realizing that they’re doing so. Often times the easiest way to determine if you’re grinding your teeth is by asking a partner or someone else to listen in on your sleeping. Teeth grinders are notorious for keeping others up at night. People who are teeth grinding will experience:

  • Jaw tightness upon waking, and a sore jaw later on.teeth grinding bruxism

  • Headaches.

  • Tooth sensitivity.

  • Cracked, flat or chipped teeth.

If your teeth appear at all damaged to you and you feel soreness upon waking, meet with your dentist immediately to determine if you are grinding or clenching your teeth.

 

Causes

Teeth grinding can be the result of several different things including:

  • Stress.

  • A bite that naturally induces grinding.

  • A side effect of some medications.

  • Caffeine in the hours before sleep.

Bruxism is more common in young children who often grow out of the habit.

 

Treatment

In most cases bruxism requires little or no treatment. While it isn’t good for your teeth, the damage done by grinding is often small enough to recommend relaxing routines before bed and leave it at that. Often times a dentist will suggest use of a mouth guard at night to protect against further wear. If your bruxism is the result of a misaligned bite, reconstructive correction can be helpful.

If you’re concerned that you could be grinding your teeth and want to meet with a dentist to make sure, make an appointment with Dr. Arzegar at Lifetime Smiles today.