Bruxism is a term that describes the habit of grinding, clenching, or gritting the teeth. Bruxism usually occurs more during sleep or during periods of stress. Teeth grinding can also be linked to an abnormal bite or crooked teeth.
The muscles in the cheek that allow us to bite down and grind our teeth are some of the strongest in the body, so bruxism can take a real toll on your physical wellbeing. If you have noticed pain in your jaw or face, or frequent headaches, teeth grinding or clenching may be the culprit. Bruxism is very treatable, so if you believe you may be grinding your teeth, come talk with Dr. Han right away.
Do I Grind My Teeth? Signs of Bruxism
For some patients, bruxism is so mild that they do not experience related symptoms, but most patients notice the effects of bruxism, including:
- Persistent jaw pain
- Tension headaches
- Ear pain
- Facial soreness
- Increased tooth sensitivity
- Worn down, flattened, or chipped teeth
Eliminate these frustrating and damaging symptoms from your life by seeking treatment for teeth grinding. Treatment for bruxism is totally painless with Dr. Han.
Noninvasive Treatment for Bruxism
If stress or a poor bite is causing you to grind your teeth, the next question is how to stop the problem before it grows worse. Dr. Han recommends comfortable and customized treatments for all of his patients, which may vary depending on their individual needs. In most cases, the effects of bruxism decrease significantly with the use of a custom-made night guard.
A bruxism night guard protects against teeth grinding during sleep. Although you may continue to clench or grind your teeth, the night guard will take on the majority of the pressure so that your teeth are left unharmed.
Dr. Han can create a custom night guard to reduce your bruxism systems. He will measure your mouth and teeth and build a night guard to meet those exact specifications. This perfect fit will make your teeth grinding treatment completely comfortable.
Dr. Han may recommend making lifestyle changes to improve your health and reduce teeth grinding. He may suggest:
- Sleeping more
- Avoiding chewing gum and other hard-to-chew foods
- Relaxing the jaw throughout the day
- Reducing stress
- Drinking more water
- Avoiding alcohol and caffeine (both substances can increase the urge to clench the teeth)
You can also manage teeth grinding pain at home by utilizing the following suggestions.
- Massage the jaw muscles, neck, and face to ease tension
- Get physical therapy or visit a chiropractor
- Do jaw-relaxing exercises
- Apply a warm and wet washcloth to the jaw
- Take muscle relaxants as prescribed
Dr. Han will give you all of the information and tools you need to properly manage bruxism. To protect your teeth against the effects of teeth grinding, contact our office today.