Do you have a problem with clenching or grinding? Many do. It is called bruxism and is caused by a variety of factors. It affects about a third of the population during the day, and roughly 8% of people at night. It is also more commonly found in women. Night guards can prevent wear and pain on your teeth.
Typical causes include:
- Sleeping Habits
- Misaligned Teeth
Bruxism can cause damage to the teeth and jaw. The pressure and grinding motions can wear away or crack teeth, and cause muscular problems within the jaw. If left untreated, bruxism can contribute to depression, eating disorders, and insomnia. It can also lead to temporomandibular joint dysfunction, more commonly referred to TMJ.
Some common symptoms of bruxism are:
- Jaw pain
- Tooth pain
- Neck stiffness or pain
- Shoulder pain
- Jaw joint stiffness or pain
Bruxism may be one of several biting problems that people have, including chewing nails, biting pens or pencils, or gnawing on the insides of their cheeks. It is a compulsive behavior, and many people don’t realize they are doing it. They become aware of the side effects long before the root cause is determined.
Luckily, it’s fairly easy to treat. In most cases, you’ll be fitted with a custom mouthguard, which you will wear at night. There are several different styles, and you may need to try a few before you find one that works. This should eliminate the problem. If it does not, additional therapies are available.
Treating bruxism is far more cost effective than not treating it. The long term wear on your teeth could become costly very quickly, as crowns, bridges, implants, or even dentures may be required to restore the damaged teeth. If you suspect you are suffering from bruxism, give us a call and we will take a look!
I would like to thank Dr. Chauvin & his staff for treating me. Dr. Chauvin’s staff accommodated me by taking me earlier than scheduled due to pain. I am so grateful to be able to eat and not be in any pain anymore!
My experience as a patient was pleasant & painless.
I will definitely be back to follow up.
– Allison S.