While it is easy to dismiss, the sound of teeth grinding at night is annoying. It also inflicts damage on your teeth, and it is advisable to see your nearby Tuart Hill Dentist to establish the cause and allow for treatment immediately. Any delay may lead to losing, loosening or fracturing of your teeth.
What Causes Teeth Grinding?
For some people, teeth grinding, also referred to as bruxism, is nothing more than a habit. In others, though, it could be a symptom of something serious such as issues with the muscles and nerves on the face. Misalignment of the lower and upper teeth jaw or imperfect positioning of the teeth could be another cause.
Stress, frustration, anxiety and tension are also thought to cause bruxism while some psychiatric medication such as antidepressants could also have the same effect on users. Sleep apnoea patients are known to grind their teeth too.
What Treatments are Available?
To arrive at the best solution, your Yokine dentist will evaluate if your teeth grinding is as a result of lifestyle factors, a sleep disorder or stress and offer appropriate treatment
a) Occlusal Appliances
These prevent teeth from wearing off and fracturing. A mouth Guard an old standard way of care for teeth grinding is. Others appliances include bite plates, bite guards and splints. A custom-made appliance evens out pressure in your jaws. They also create a barrier between the lower and upper teeth to protect them from the effects of teeth grinding and diminish the noise produced when grinding teeth at night.
b) Mandibular Advancement Devices
These are the choice of treatment where sleep apnea is the cause of grinding. The devices are custom made and fit over the lower and upper teeth. They are worn at night.
c) Addressing Stress
Where the cause of grinding is stress, your dentist may prescribe muscle relaxants. They could also recommend stress-relieving activities such as exercising, seeing a counsellor or a physical therapist. This will depend on your stress levels and their causes. Where the reason is medication, your dentist will recommend your doctor to switch to a different option or offer medicine that will counter the bruxism.
d) Behavioural Modification
Lifestyle changes can help reduce teeth grinding. Minimise the consumption of alcohol and foods containing caffeine, and avoid chewing gum. Another form of intervention is training your jaws to relax by positioning your tongue between the teeth when you notice you are clenching or grinding your teeth.
If you realise you grind your teeth, it is essential that you see your dentist immediately to counter its effects before too much damage is done.
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