Nightguards for Bruxism
Battling Bruxism with Nightguards
Some patients react to stress by grinding their teeth unconsciously during the day or, more commonly, while sleeping. The constant pressure and motion can severely harm the teeth as well as the muscles and tissues in and around the jaw. Fortunately, the condition, known as bruxism, can be easily remedied with a nightguard.
The Facts About Clenching & Grinding
Common symptoms of bruxism include a sore jaw, headaches, or earaches. Causes vary but may include stress, anxiety, tension, misaligned teeth, posture, diet, sleeping habits, and several other factors. Bruxism is most prevalent in women and generally found in about one-third of the population.
Individuals who react to stress with anger, pain, frustration, or aggression are the most commonly affected. People with bruxism often have other biting habits, such as biting fingernails, pencils, lips, or the insides of their cheeks.
The constant clenching and grinding of the teeth can cause not only the aforementioned symptoms, but it may also contribute to TMJ (temporomandibular joint) dysfunction, which has a long list of side effects including pain in the head and neck. Teeth rubbing together consistently will also result in surface wear over time, which will cause many dental problems. Insomnia, eating disorders, and depression can result from bruxism if left untreated.
A Solid Solution
How can you stop an unconscious habit? A thorough evaluation will allow us to check your teeth, soft tissues, and muscles. If we determine that you are suffering from bruxism, we'll create an orthodontic appliance, called a nightguard or splint, to prevent any grinding and clenching. Many types of nightguards exist, and patients react differently to the various styles. If one appliance does not work, another may. In many cases, simply wearing a nightguard will eliminate the problem. However, if the condition persists, we can prescribe alternative therapies to correct the issue. Some simple practices that can relieve symptoms of bruxism include stress and anxiety management, focused facial relaxation, massage and stretching of face and neck muscles, applying ice or wet heat, proper rest, eating soft foods, and properly hydrating the body. If your teeth were damaged because of bruxism, or if we find TMJ to be a factor, our team will repair and treat you to provide complete relief