Treatment for Teeth Grinding
Bruxism (teeth grinding) affects many of us and often occurs during sleep. The repetitive clenching can fatigue the jaw muscles and lead to premature wear on teeth. While the condition can lead to many dental problems, it is also easily treatable in most cases.
Dr. Mark Luria and Dr. Rena Allswang at Dearborn Family Dentistry in Dearborn, MI, bring decades of experience to the treatment of bruxism. Our esteemed dentists have professional affiliations with the American Dental Association, Michigan Dental Association, American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry, and International Congress of Oral Implantologists.
Common Causes of Teeth Grinding
There are multiple causes of teeth grinding. Bruxism is common among children, but is generally not considered a concern until their adult teeth grow in. Among adults, stress, allergies, misaligned teeth, sleep apnea, anxiety, and jaw posture are all common causes of teeth grinding.
The American Academy of Oral Medicine reports:
- The prevalence of bruxism tends to decrease with age.
- Many individuals grind their teeth on occasion.
- Most people who grind their teeth are unaware of it.
- Common risk factors for bruxism include daytime stress, loud snoring, anxiety, obstructive sleep apnea, alcohol abuse, smoking, caffeine, and certain antidepressant drugs.
Teeth grinding can permanently damage your teeth and require extensive reconstructive work if left untreated.
Potential Consequences of Teeth Grinding
Left untreated, teeth grinding can lead to numerous issues, including:
- Muscle strain near the jaws
- Tooth damage
- Worn teeth (attrition)
- Loose teeth
- Tooth sensitivity
- Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder
- Damage to the TMJs
- Abfraction (dental lesions near the gumline caused by the stress of bruxism)
There is a wide range of treatment options for bruxism at our Dearborn office. After one of our doctors examines your smile, you will be given a treatment plan that starts with the least invasive measures. There are surgical options (such as those that correct jaw alignment), but those are often prescribed only as a last resort. Common treatments for teeth grinding include:
- Addressing obstructive sleep apnea, if needed
- Using a mouthguard or oral splint that prevents the teeth from contacting during sleep
- Dietary changes
There are many lifestyle changes you can make in order to address bruxism:
- Take measures to manage stress and anxiety
- Follow good sleep hygiene by turning off electronic devices and sleeping in a dark, quiet room
- Develop a routine before sleeping that could involve a hot bath, reading a book, or listening to soothing music
- Exercise during the day
- Try different sleeping positions to find the optimal one (sleeping flat on your back is often helpful)
- Cutting back on alcohol and caffeine
- Quitting tobacco use
Contact Us Today
Once you have been properly diagnosed at our Dearborn clinic, one of our doctors will prescribe a treatment to provide relief and protect your oral health. Teeth grinding can permanently damage your teeth and require extensive reconstructive work if left untreated. To schedule your exam, contact our office online or call (313) 246-4587.