If you grind or clench your teeth during sleep, it can wear away your enamel, cause severe headaches, or lead to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain. At Glen Dental Center in Glenview, Illinois, Jeffrey Gilmor, DDS, Verena Phillips, DDS, and their team regularly work with men, women, and children to treat and relieve oral health problems caused by teeth grinding. To request your appointment, call the office today.
Sometimes teeth grinding happens as a result of stress and anxiety. But the majority of people who grind their teeth do so while they’re sleeping.
Common causes of teeth grinding include misaligned jaws, crooked or crowded teeth, or sleep disorders like obstructive sleep apnea (OSA).
Teeth grinding doesn’t always present symptoms. But if you regularly wake up in the morning with a severe headache, jaw discomfort, or facial pain, teeth grinding could be to blame.
If you share your bed with your spouse or significant other, ask them if they notice you clenching your jaw or make grinding noises during the night.
Following a thorough oral exam, your Glen Dental Center dentist can determine if you grind your teeth. Telltale signs include jaw tenderness and excessive wear on your teeth, particularly the molars and premolars toward the back of your mouth as well as gum recession.
Teeth grinding might not seem like a big deal, but over time it can take a significant toll on your oral and physical health.
For example, if you grind your teeth every night, you’re more likely to experience tooth loss, cracks, chips, and even changes to your overall facial structure. Teeth grinding also increases your risk of chronic facial pain and regular headaches.
At Glen Dental Center, the team usually recommends a prescription mouthguard to prevent teeth grinding.
If your dentist detects symptoms of teeth grinding, they take a series of X-rays to get a closer look at your jawbone and tooth roots.
Next, they use putty or another malleable material to make impressions of your teeth and gums. Your dentist sends these impressions to a dental lab that makes a custom mouthguard to the unique curves of your mouth.
If obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) or another sleep disorder causes you to grind your teeth, the team might recommend a custom made snore guard.
Sometimes, more conservative treatments can provide relief. For example, if you grind your teeth due to stress or anxiety, the team might recommend avoiding alcohol or cutting back on foods and beverages that contain caffeine.
They might also recommend stress-relieving activities like yoga and meditation to help relax your muscles.
If you suspect that you grind your teeth, help is available. Make an appointment at Glen Dental Center by calling the office today.