Teeth grinding, also known as Bruxism, affects millions of Americans. While many people grind their teeth occasionally, teeth grinding that occurs on a regular basis causes damage to the teeth and may contribute to other oral health problems.
Because many people grind their teeth during sleep, they may be unaware that they are affected by the condition. A dentist can easily identify the signs of bruxism which include:
- Worn, flattened, fractured or chipped teeth
- Worn tooth enamel
- Tooth sensitivity
- Jaw pain or tightness in the jaw muscles
- Facial pain
- Damaged tissue on the inside of your cheek
Teeth Grinding Causes
There are several causes of teeth grinding:
- Stress or anxiety
- Abnormal bite
- Crooked or missing teeth
- TMJ related disorders
Treatment for Teeth Grinding
The first step in teeth grinding treatment is to stop the patient from grinding or clenching the teeth. Often this is accomplished with a mouth guard or night guard, Dr. McCool offers the latest technology in night guards: a NTI-tss device. Another treatment option to correct the source of the problem, whether it is crooked teeth or an abnormal bite, environmental factors such as stress, or a TMJ disorder.
NTI-tss Dental Device
A NTI-tss is a small night-guard that fits comfortably between your teeth, preventing the teeth from coming into contact with one another and grinding. The NTI-tss device is FDA approved and reduces clenching and grinding by up to 66 percent.
They differ from traditional night guards because night guard devices provide a surface for you to “bite down on.” New studies show, however, that these devices can actually increase the intensity of your clenching reflex. The NTI-tss device suppresses the clenching reflex by preventing the teeth from contacting each other. There is no surface to bite down on or bite into.
Bite Correction Therapy
Sometimes the best way to stop teeth grinding is to fix the bite. This can be done through orthodontic treatment, crowns or veneers, implants, or tooth extractions.