Do you grind your teeth or clench your jaw?
Do you often wake up in the morning with jaw pain? Bruxism is the habit of grinding together the upper and lower jaws, usually during sleep. Teeth grinding can damage the alignment and function of the delicate jaw joint known as the temporomandibular joint. The habitual motion of grinding the upper and lower jaw together puts stress on the joint and can cause irreversible damage.
Teeth grinding can affect patients of all ages. Bruxism is common in young patients, but may also develop in the teens and early twenties. Some children will grow out of the habit, while others will carry it into adulthood. Many believe that high stress triggers teeth grinding, but only a medical professional can diagnose your specific cause properly.
While bruxism can be due to stress, it can also be a sign of an underlying medical condition. Fortunately, there are several treatments available to help people manage their bruxism and reduce its effects on their daily lives. These treatments range from lifestyle changes to medical interventions, depending on the severity of the condition.
Many patients who grind their teeth experience chronic pain symptoms. Fortunately, you have our dentist in Claremont, CA, to make personalized recommendations on how to make lifestyle changes, reduce pain and stress.
Signs you may be grinding your teeth include:
- Headaches in the morning
- Frequent jaw pain
- The tension in your shoulder, neck, and upper back
- Popping or clicking in your jaw
- Pain in the jaw, neck, ears, or TMJ
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
- Ringing in your ears or earaches
The Biological Approach To Treating Bruxism
At Claremont Dental Institute, our doctors take a holistic, biological approach to treating TMJ and bruxism. Biological dentistry looks at the whole chewing system, analyzing the alignment of teeth and your bite. We also consider the health of your gums and the function of your jaw.
Most patients grind their teeth while they sleep, making bruxism difficult to diagnose. Many patients go years without treatment and develop everyday discomfort in the face, neck, and shoulders. Some find relief from over-the-counter pain medication, but this is only temporary and provides little relief.
Based on the patient’s personal health, lifestyle, and personal beliefs, our dentist will build a tailored treatment plan to address the underlying cause of your jaw malfunction. Many patients with bruxism will benefit from an oral appliance. Oral appliance therapy is less invasive than surgery and is highly effective for preventing bruxism.
Oral appliance therapy is a non-invasive and highly effective treatment for bruxism. This form of therapy is becoming increasingly popular due to its effectiveness in preventing bruxism and its convenience as it does not require surgery. It involves the use of custom-made oral appliances that will fit the patient’s mouth perfectly. These devices act as a cushion between the upper and lower teeth while you sleep. They prevent grinding or clenching of the teeth during sleep, which can lead to serious dental problems down the road.
Treatment Using Oral Appliance Therapy
To begin treatment, we must first conduct a detailed dental exam. After the exam, our dentists will be able to determine the best course of action for your specific case. Our dentists will custom-fabricate the oral appliance so that it fits comfortably in your mouth. An oral appliance from the Claremont Dental Institute is more secure and effective than over-the-counter “bite and fit” options.
The appliance will gently shift your jaw into proper alignment, and hold the upper and lower jaw in place. The device prevents the jaws from grinding or clenching together while you sleep. This allows surrounding muscles and tendons to rest and begin to heal. Our dentists at Claremont Dental Institute will help you ease the painful symptoms often associated with prolonged bruxism.
What happens if you keep grinding your teeth?
If you continue to grind your teeth, you will wear hem down to nubs and damage them over time. Teeth grinding can cause tooth fractures, tooth decay, wear on the surface of teeth, cracking, and potentially tooth loss. If you grind your teeth at night, it can cause serious sleep problems and lead to insomnia.
What vitamin deficiency causes teeth grinding?
Lacking vitamin C and D can cause patients to grind their teeth. Low calcium levels can also cause teeth grinding. Patients can take vitamin supplements to attempt to stop the habit, but it will not fix the existing damage.
Does coffee cause teeth grinding?
Coffee can make teeth grinding worse. Caffeine causes patients’ heart rate to increase, which may cause teeth grinding at night. Patients who grind their teeth should try to avoid coffee and definitely stay away from caffeine after 3 pm.
Request A Dental Exam & Consultation Today
If you or someone you know grinds or clenches their jaw, contact Claremont Dental Institute to find relief. Contact our dental office at your convenience by calling (909) 277-6919.