WHAT IS BRUXISM?
Bruxism is a term used to describe teeth grinding or clenching in your sleep.
Most people suffer from bruxism and don’t know it, since they are unaware of doing it in their sleep. It’s a phenomenon that many are completely unaware of and the damage it can inflict on your teeth.
Although we all occasionally grind or clench our teeth, people who suffer from bruxism do it to the point where it starts to cause severe attrition (wear and damage) to their teeth, and may cause other medical problems. This condition can manifest in a couple of ways:
WHAT IS THE CAUSE OF BRUXISM/TEETH GRINDING?
Bruxism is a complicated condition and potential factors are many. However, current medical research recognizes the following contributory factors:
HOW DO I KNOW IF I HAVE BRUXISM?
Many suffer from sleep bruxism and don’t know until complications develop. Hence, understanding the symptoms is the first step in recognizing it. The list is more diverse than you may think, but some of the signs and symptomsare listed below:
A complete evaluation with Dr. Nodesh is required to evaluate all signs and symptoms and for appropriate diagnosis.
WHAT IS THE TREATMENT FOR BRUXISM/GRINDING?
Treatment for bruxism primarily focuses on managing the cause, though that can sometimes be very difficult if it involves a related medical condition.
Most often, a prosthodontist will maintain health of teeth and jaw by professionally fabricating a mouthguard that can last for several years. This helps to protect the teeth and reduce pain in the jaw.
Although it’s vital to wear your nightguard faithfully if you grind your teeth at night, you can also follow a few self-care tips to help to prevent the grinding from worsening.
WHAT TO EXPECT FROM A CUSTOMIZED MOUTHGUARD?
A mouthguard, sometimes called a nightguard, is made by a prosthodontist to fit patients mouth precisely to create a gap between upper and lower teeth. The bite is modified to help balance and maintain position of the TMJ (temporomandibular joint). The mouthguard/nightguard is not a cure, but simply helps to protect the teeth, relax the muscles, and reduce pressure on the TMJ.
For some patients, additional medication with jaw exercise may be needed.