Bruxism and Your Health
If you suffer from nighttime teeth grinding or bruxism, you may wake up with headaches, a sore jaw, or even ear pain. This common behavior is usually caused by stress, but missing teeth or improper bite can also trigger it. If you grind your teeth or clench your jaw forcefully, it can eventually lead to excessive wear of tooth enamel or even tooth decay and gum disease. In severe cases, it can lead to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome with chronic jaw pain and associated clicking and popping of the jaw.
Identifying the Signs of Teeth Grinding
If you are like many people who grind their teeth, you may not even realize you are doing it. Your dentist may suspect teeth grinding when he or she notices worn tooth enamel or signs of decay. A mild case may not need any specific treatment, but if you are clenching and grinding often enough to cause symptoms, your dentist may suggest wearing a custom mouth guard at night to protect your teeth from further damage. Tooth grinding caused by stress may respond to physical therapy, meditation, relaxation techniques, or massage. Muscle relaxants can help in severe cases.
Other Causes of Bruxism
In a small percentage of cases, tooth grinding isn’t due to anxiety or malocclusion. It can result from neurological disorders such as Parkinson’s disease and Huntington’s disease. Prescription medications such as antidepressants can also cause teeth grinding. If you have jaw pain, headaches, worn teeth, or other symptoms suggestive of tooth grinding, see your dentist for evaluation and treatment.
To get the dental care you deserve from an affordable dentist in Downtown Detroit, call Gentle Dental at Jefferson Avenue today at (313) 879-4769 or make an appointment.
Gentle Dental offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Downtown Detroit. With 8 affiliated practices throughout Michigan, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Gentle Dental at Jefferson Avenue, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Gentle Dental at Jefferson Avenue.