Tooth grinding, more formally known as bruxism, is a condition that involves the clenching and grinding between the upper and bottom jaw. For some people, this condition is caused by stress or because of orthodontic misalignment. For others, they might not even realize that they’re grinding their teeth because it is done mainly at night while they’re sleeping. Left untreated, bruxism can cause a wide range of dental problems that can be costly to fix.
Here are five signs of teeth grinding to keep an eye on.
When you are constantly grinding and clenching your teeth, this causes a great deal of pressure in the head area. As a result, you may suffer from persistent headaches that are difficult to treat with over-the-counter medications. Many of these headaches may be morning-specific, which means that they occur mostly when you wake up.
If your teeth constantly ache and hurt, this could signal an issue with bruxism. Most often, the pain is more generalized rather than specific to one tooth. You may also find that you have issues with sensitivity, so you might find that it’s difficult to drink anything that’s either too hot or cold.
Enamel wear is very common among individuals who grind their teeth. Natural teeth tend to have a lot of grooves, known as fissures, on the very top of the crown. When these fissures are worn down, this is typically due to excess clenching by the patient. By looking in the mirror at your back teeth, you’ll be able to tell if they’re excessively flat-looking.
Cracked or Broken Teeth
Because of an enormous amount of pressure on the teeth, bruxism can cause both cracking and breaking of natural dentition. You might also find that your crowns, bridgework, and fillings start to crack as a result of the pressure of tooth grinding. If this occurs, it’s important to take care of the crack or break first, and then work to eradicate the issue with bruxism.
Again, there is an awful lot of pressure that occurs when you’re clenching the upper and lower jaw. As a result, many patients have problems with their TMJ, which is the joint that connects the lower jaw to the skull. This joint might feel tight, sore, or be difficult to move when yawning and eating.
If you have noticed any one of these signs of teeth grinding, be sure to contact Mountain View Dental to schedule an appointment. The comfortable waiting room and knowledgeable staff members will be able to assist you in finding the right solution to your dental problems. Most often, tooth grinding can be treated with a simple mouth guard that is worn during the night while you sleep. For other patients, they might benefit from different treatments or orthodontic options to help with tooth misalignment. Mountain View Dental professionals can answer your questions and schedule a convenient, easy appointment for you.