Teeth Grinding or Jaw Clenching known as Bruxism Facts to Know!
What is Teeth Grinding?
Teeth grinding with the scientific name of bruxism is a condition in which the patients encounter oral parafunction. They have excessive jaw clenching which is not related to the normal function of eating or speaking. It is unfortunately ubiquitous among the people around the world. There are some common symptoms like the sensitivity of teeth, feeling pain in the muscles of jaw, crown or fillings damage, or even headache, it’s interesting to know that these symptoms might be so mild that most of the time the patients won’t even feel it.
Types of Bruxism
There are mainly two types of bruxism or teeth grinding. One that happens at night during sleep is called nocturnal bruxism and the other that happens at day while you are awake is known as awake bruxism. Sleep bruxism is the type of teeth grinding that is more severe and causes more teeth wear.
What factors are causing teeth grinding?
Unfortunately, to this date the primary cause of bruxism is unknown. It is said that it may stem from different reasons but most often it is related to anxiety and stress. It seems that sleep bruxism engages both men and women equally whereas the awake version is more common in women.
Several treatments are implemented nowadays but evidence shows that almost none are perfectly or highly effective.
1.The side effects of some medications such as those regarding depression may also cause jaw clenching.
2.Snoring and other sleep disorders such as kicking during sleep, sleep paralysis, or hallucination are also linked with teeth grinding.
3.Your lifestyle may also contribute to bruxism such as drinking a lot of coffee alcohol, smoking, or consuming recreational drugs.
4.In children teeth grinding can happen from the appearance of baby teeth and continue until the first adult tooth.
Symptoms of Bruxism
Patients with the bruxing problem are usually unaware of their situation for 2 simple reasons. First, they cannot make a connection between the symptoms they see and the real cause of them, and second, there is no symptom to see!
Turning to various signs and symptoms we can include a fair few numbers as the following:
- Tooth wear especially attrition that affects the teeth biting surface or abfraction where the part is in the shape of notches around the gumline
- Teeth fractures (broken teeth or fillings)
- A feeling of pain when drinking cold beverages; this happens to hypersensitive teeth in which the insulating layers are impaired
- Teeth Inflammatory and loose teeth
- Noise mostly heard by the sleeping partner during nocturnal bruxism
- Lip or cheek biting, tongue thrusting sometimes accompanied by a burning sensation as more parafunctional activities besides teeth grinding occurs
- Scalloped or crenated tongue where the teeth indent the tongue
- Increase in size or fatigue of mastication muscle
- Clicking of joints in the involved part
- Temple pains which lead to headaches
More serious problems are dental abscess or infection. It is through the effects of symptoms that one can notice jaw clenching than the signs and symptoms themselves.
Treatment of Jaw Clenching
- Mouthguard reduces the effects of teeth grinding to a large extent, such as tooth wear and pain in the jaw; it also helps with sleep hygiene. You can order one which is custom made and perfectly right for you at Amazing Smile Dental.
- To reduce stress and anxiety it is also recommended to visit a psychologist for cognitive behavioral therapy.
- In severe cases, which causes difficulty of chewing, a crown will be used or the biting or chewing surface of the teeth is reformed.
- There are some types of medication for bruxism, one that relaxes the muscles in the jaw such as muscle relaxant or botox injection (in severe cases) and the other which is applied by a licensed therapist for control on stress level. You need to consult with your physician and dentist regarding the medicine you use, if it is diagnosed that the problem is of a side effect related to a certain medication, that medication would be replaced by another.
- Addressing the problem of apnea as a sleep disorder would also help with the problem of bruxism.
Finally, Last but not least, as we always keep our promises at Amazing Smile Dental, we provide you with the most suitable and highest level of treatment, and most importantly your comfortability is our top priority.