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Sleep Dentistry

Night Guard & Sleep Appliances


Why Do We Grind Teeth?

     Grinding teeth at night or clenching jaw during the day is a subconscious habitual disorder called bruxism.  It is believed to be caused by many factors, such as:

  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Sleep disorder (Sleep Apnea)
  • Abnormal bite
  • Missing or crooked teeth
  • Irritation in the mouth
  • Discomfort from tooth infection, gum inflammation or allergies.

How Do I Know if I Grind my Teeth?

     Because grinding often occurs during sleep, most people are unaware that they grind their teeth. However, a dull, constant headache or sore jaw when you wake up is a telltale symptom of bruxism. Many times people learn that they grind their teeth by their loved one who hears the grinding at night. But a more definitive confirmation should be from dentist if there is excessive wear of the chewing surface of your teeth, or if there are cracks or fracture line on your teeth.



Symptoms of Bruxism 

  • Dull headaches
  • Jaw soreness
  • Teeth that are painful or loose
  • Fractured teeth
  • Worn Teeth
  • Receding gums
  • Teeth sensitivity

Treatment Options for Bruxism

  • Night guard is prescribed to protect teeth and gum from further damage
  • Treating sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, may reduce or cure bruxism
  • Stress reduction.  If stress is causing you to grind your teeth, ask your doctor or dentist about options to reduce your stress. Attending stress counseling, starting an exercise program, seeing a physical therapist, or obtaining a prescription for muscle relaxants are among some of the options that may be offered.
  • Habit change. Certain behavior modification can also help reduce bruxism.  Do not drink alcohol or caffeinated beverages before bedtime, don't smoke, don't bite on pencils or anything that is not food, don't chew gums, warm towel massage of your jaw before going to bed.