Grinding the teeth or bruxism is an unintentional habit to grind the teeth, this causing attrition. Bruxism occurs in two different ways. The act of grinding your teeth while awake ( Awake Bruxism) and the act of grinding your teeth while asleep (Sleep Bruxism). The latter is mostly described as a sleep-related ailment. People who pass through sleep bruxism are likely to have other sleep disorders including snoring or/and sleep apnea. In less severe cases, grinding of the teeth is not considered as a major dental ailment. This is because it could be managed and controlled. In extreme cases, grinding of the teeth can lead to jaw disorders, headaches, damaged teeth, and other gum related disorders. Research has proven that a high percentage of people who undergo this ailment are unconscious of the act. The only way to know you have bruxism is either your partner takes a close watch on you or you begin to have symptoms. Whether in a mild case or severe case, we advise that you should try as much as possible to get your dentist in the conversation. In extreme cases, bruxism can lead to jaw disorders, headaches, crooked or damaged teeth, teeth sensitivity, and other gum problems.
The symptoms of teeth grinding include:
- Teeth Grinding
- Attrition resulting in flattened teeth.
- Tooth pain or sensitivity.
- Pain in the jaw
- Pain while trying to open the mouth.
- Pain while chewing
- Jaw, neck, or face pain or soreness.
Possible Causes of Bruxism
There is no pointing fact to the cause of bruxism. However, research has proved that the disorder is often caused by physical, psychological, and genetic factors. Physical and psychological factors point to the fact that it could be a habit while genetics proves that it could be hereditary. Moreso, awake bruxism is likely caused by physical factors including stress, anxiety, anger, frustration, or tension. On the other hand, sleep bruxism is often referred to as a sleep disorder.
Asides stress, anger, and frustration, teeth grinding are common in young children. However, in most cases, it goes away when the child becomes an adult. Another risk factor to bruxism is; personality type. Having a personality is aggressive, competitive, or hyperactive. Medications, especially psychiatric medications can also make anyone prone to bruxism. Aforementioned, genetic factors can cause teeth grinding. Also, teeth grinding is often linked to psychiatric disorders such as Parkinson’s disease, dementia, gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD), epilepsy, night terrors, sleep-related disorders such as sleep apnea, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Detection and Diagnosis
The symptoms of bruxism are one of the ways it can be diagnosed. Teeth grinding would cause visible wear and can erode the teeth. Also, a dental examination can be used to detect the grinding of the teeth. Also, the impact of attrition is often seen either when an impression is taken or when the cheek shows a fall. On the other hand, people who have sleep bruxism often wake up to tooth sensitivity and headaches.
6 Ways to Defeat Bruxism.
- Defeat Stress
We understand the world has gotten busier and everyone is trying to make ends meet. Try as much as possible to take rest intermittently. Take deep breaths and defeat stress.
- Get A Mouth Guard
A mouthguard is used to prevent teeth grinding. Often attributed to boxers, however, it is also used to prevent bruxism. Mouthguards are made to your perfect size. It provides a barrier between your teeth and helps you alleviate jaw pain in extreme cases. To get a mouth guard, kindly contact us today.
- Understand Your Personality
A complete understanding of your personality can help you manage your temperaments. Try as much as possible to have control of yourself when you are angry
- Kill Habits
Old habits they say never die. As much as habits play a role in our life, it is advisable to be conscious of teeth grinding. You could tell your partner to keep watch on you while you defeat the disorder.
- Limit Caffeine
Excess intake of caffeine can affect the relaxing muscles of your jaw. It is advised that you minimize the intake of soda, tea, coffee, and energy drinks.
- Biting on Objects
Make efforts towards biting on things that are not food. Like biting on pencils, biros, nails, and the rest.
“If you suffer from bruxism or grinding your teeth, book an appointment today to see possible solutions”