Do you catch yourself grinding your teeth spontaneously during the day, or wake up feeling as though you’ve been doing so all night? If so, does it make you worry? Grinding your teeth is one of those things that may or may not be a threat to your dental health. It all depends on how often you do it, and how successfully you can stop without professional treatment.
Bruxism, or clinical teeth-grinding, is an uncontrollable condition, and for many patients, it occurs while they’re asleep and unaware of what’s happening. Because it can go unnoticed for so long, bruxism is a common reasons behind issues such as excessively worn teeth, tooth damage, trouble with jaw joints (TMJ disorder), and more.
- Causes of bruxism differ from patient to patient, and are not always directly dental related. For example, excessive levels of stress can often cause patients to sporadically and forcefully clench their teeth even if their bites are perfectly aligned. Daily exercise and other stress-reducing activities may be able to help alleviate bruxism and the potential damage it can cause.
- Even if you are not under unhealthy amounts of stress, you might still be susceptible to bruxism if your bite is unbalanced, such as if your teeth and/or jawbone are crooked. If a bite imbalance is to blame, then treatment can include correcting the problem to eliminate bruxism’s underlying cause.
- If you catch yourself grinding your teeth a lot during the day, you can help train yourself to stop by placing the tip of your tongue between the front ones. Once your teeth touch your tongue, they will automatically stop from clenching together to avoid damaging it.
ABOUT YOUR PRAIRIE VILLAGE, KS DENTIST:
With decades of professional dental care experience, native of Kansas City, Robert M Browne, DDS is proud to provide general, cosmetic, restorative, and prosthetic care to patients from Prairie Village and surrounding communities. To learn more or to schedule a visit with Dr. Browne, contact our office today at (913) 901-8585.