One of the most common causes of frequent headaches or worn or broken teeth is teeth grinding. This condition, clinically termed as bruxism, can happen both during the day and during sleep and can negatively impact quality of life and put your oral health at risk. Dentists like Dr. Harry W. McCool in Lilburn, GA can easily identify and help you manage your teeth grinding habit.
Why Do I Grind My Teeth?
Tooth grinding and jaw clenching often signal an issue with the bite. The “bite” refers to the alignment of your teeth when your top and bottom teeth are brought together. People who grind or clench their teeth often have uneven bites, such as an underbite or overbite.
Bruxism is also commonly associated with stress, whether from environmental factors in your life or stress inside the mouth and jaw from a dental problem. The teeth and jaw work as part of an intricate system of muscles in the mouth and neck, and if this system doesn’t work properly, it results in tension. This tension can bring on headaches, teeth grinding, and face and neck pain.
Signs of Teeth Grinding
Dentists can usually easily identify signs of teeth grinding, such as:
- Worn or dull teeth, especially chips or flat spots
- Sensitive teeth
- Jaw pain
- Frequent headaches
- Cuts or sores on the inside cheek
How to Stop Teeth Grinding
Reducing your stress levels may help you stop grinding your teeth, but if that stress is outside your control as the result of a dental problem, you’ll need other ways to stop grinding your teeth. Often, stress reduction techniques and occlusal appliances are combined to treat bruxism.
There are a few different types of occlusal appliances. You might be familiar with night guards, which are custom-fitted to the patient’s mouth to fit over the top or bottom teeth to prevent nighttime teeth grinding.
For more severe cases, your dentist may propose mandibular advancement devices, which are designed to push the jaw forward when the dentist suspects a sleep disorder is causing the problem. These devices are also sometimes referred to as “snore guards,” which help align the jaw during sleep to help with sleep apnea or snoring.
Bruxism Treatment in Lilburn, GA
Teeth grinding can damage your teeth and keep you from living a healthy life, free of pain, so it’s important to seek treatment if you grind your teeth. Dr. McCool’s team in Lilburn, GA is a full-service dental office that can help you put an end to bruxism and keep your teeth and mouth healthy. Call (770) 450-4407 or contact us online to schedule an appointment.