Grinding and Clenching Teeth

What is Bruxism?

  • Bruxism is when you clench or grind your teeth
  • It is most common at night
  • It can cause aches and pains
  • It is a sleep disorder
  • It can be fixed

Bruxism is a common condition that commonly occur during sleep. That is why many who have it are unaware they are grinding their teeth. Most people only realize they have it if a partner tells them about the noise or if you start feeling symptoms.

Why Do You Grind Your Teeth?

A common cause is an imperfect bite. An imperfect bite means that the lower and upper jaw do not come together so the teeth do not fit comfortably. When this happens, you try to force them into a perfect bite. It is like chewing food even though there isn’t any.

It isn’t just grinding that causes problems but jaw clenching to. This can cause you to feel uncomfortable and can cause damage to the teeth, especially if you grind your teeth to.

Lifestyle can also contribute to this condition. People who are stressed can be unaware that they are grinding their teeth, this often happens while they are sleeping.

What Does Grinding and Clenching Do to Teeth?

When grinding is caused by an imperfect bite you may start to bite harder which damages the enamel on your teeth. Biting harder will eventually wear down the teeth.

The most common effects of Bruxism (grinding of teeth) which usually happens when you sleep are:

  • Jaw pain
  • Ear ache
  • Tooth sensitivity to hot and cold food/drink
  • Facial Pain
  • Neck Pain
  • Problems with sleep / sleep disorder

What Are the Solutions to Teeth Grinding and Clenching?

If you discuss your symptoms with your dentist and they decided treatment is needed, you might be given a mouth guard. This is a common solution that will help prevent teeth grinding while you sleep. Not only will it stop the grinding process but the damage it does to your teeth to. If the teeth grinding and clenching is caused by an imperfect bite your dentist may adjust your teeth. This will improve your bite so will stop you subconsciously grinding and clenching.

There are natural ways to stop the grinding and clenching. These are often recommended to you if your condition is caused by stress. If this is the case you could try relaxation techniques and stress management. There are also facial exercises you can do to relax the face before you go to sleep.

Grinding and clenching of the teeth is not something you have to live with. You don’t have to suffer painful symptoms or damaged teeth. At Painfree Dentistry we offer treatments and guidance to prevent this issue causing any more damage.