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Treating Teeth Grinding: Fighting the Nightly Grind

By Roni S. Berbari, DMD on August 11, 2015

A blue mouth guard for treating tooth grindingHighly experienced and committed to total wellness, Dr. Roni Berbari offers patients throughout Montreal some of the finest dental care treatments available. He offers the latest in restorative dentistry techniques to enhance overall health as well as expert cosmetic dentistry procedures and general dentistry services.

One common dental problem that can be diagnosed and treated is teeth grinding (bruxism). Let's consider these matters in a bit more detail right now.

About Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

Teeth grinding refers to the shifting, gnashing, gnawing, and clenching of the teeth that occurs when a person is asleep. This is often due to an inability of the upper and lower teeth to find a comfortable resting position.

Over a long period of time, teeth grinding can result in a number of serious dental health problems, including chipped teeth, cracked teeth, gum recession, jaw pain, headaches, and even daytime fatigue due to poor sleep.

Common Causes of Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

The most common causes of teeth grinding include the following:

  • Poor Dental Alignment – If your teeth are poorly aligned, your teeth will likely shift a fair amount in search of a good resting position.

  • Excessive Stress – Stress can result in a number of issues with teeth grinding and clenching as your body responds to anxiety.

  • Missing Teeth – When you are missing a tooth or a few teeth, it's possible that the change in your dental arch will result in grinding or clenching.

  • Sleep Disorders – Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea can actually result in issues such as teeth grinding.

  • Side Effects of Medications – Some medications can results in side effects such as teeth grinding and excessive clenching.

  • Symptom of a Disease/Systemic Condition – Certain systemic diseases and conditions that affect the muscles can result in clenching and grinding of the teeth.

Bite Guards Are a Common First Step in Treating Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

A common way to reduce the stress on the jaw joint and the teeth is to prescribe a bite guard. A bite guard is a protective mouthpiece that prevents direct contact between the upper teeth and lower teeth, reducing the stress on the jaw and the amount of damage done to the teeth in the process.

Orthodontic Care Can Help Eliminate Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

If you have teeth that are crooked or improperly aligned, an ideal option to treat teeth grinding is to consider orthodontic treatment. Braces, Invisalign, and other orthodontic treatments will improve dental alignment and help ensure fewer issues with grinding and clenching related to poor dental alignment.

Stress Management Helps Reduce Cases of Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

If teeth grinding is related to stress and anxiety, there are many options for stress management that may prove helpful to patients. This may be breathing and meditation methods, or it might involve regular exercise to channel your stress in a more positive manner.

Combining Multiple Approaches to Meet Your Needs

It's not uncommon for multiple approaches to be employed when it comes to treating teeth grinding. Stress management combined with mouth guards and/or orthodontics may be able to enhance your overall wellness in the long run, relieving teeth grinding and helping you have the healthiest smile possible.

Learn More About Treating Tooth Grinding

For more information about teeth grinding and how it can be treated, be sure to contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. Dr. Roni Berbari and the entire team here looks forward to your visit and helping you have the healthiest and most beautiful smile possible.

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