Bruxism: What Are the Treatment Options?
Most of the time, jaw clenching and teeth grinding occur when you are sleeping. Therefore, you can’t stop it since the actions are not voluntary. Bruxism can be detrimental to your health.
When you grit your teeth, the friction causes wear and tear on the enamel. When the enamels wear, you might be at risk of developing root canal infections since the weak crown is susceptible to entry of bacteria.
Therefore, if you suffer from teeth grinding, you can visit a dentist in Boca Raton, FL, for evaluation and treatments. You can still stop jaw clenching and teeth-gritting during sleep naturally. However, if the natural remedies don’t work, you should consider visiting a dentist.
If you grind your teeth or clench your teeth, the treatment options might vary depending on the root cause of the condition. At our dental clinic, Dr. Reda A. Abdel-Fattah will help you choose the right treatment after examining your teeth and jaws.
Some of the factors that might cause teeth grinding or jaw clenching include:
- Anxiety or stress
- Age since it is common among children and goes away in adulthood
- Personality, especially people who are hyperactive or aggressive
- Family, especially gritting teeth during sleep
- Psychiatric medications and antidepressants
At the dental clinic, the dentist will check for signs and changes in your mouth to determine if you need treatments. Next, the dentist will evaluate the cause of your condition before offering treatments.
When determining the cause, your dentist might ask you about your oral health, medications, medical history, sleep habits, and daily routines. To evaluate the condition’s extent, your dentist will check for tenderness signs on the jaw, broken teeth, and carry out x-ray tests to check the underlying bone.
In some cases, treatment for people who clench jaws and grind their teeth is not necessary. Some kids outgrow the condition without treatments, and most adults don’t grind their teeth during sleep.
However, if you are at risk of developing complications as a result of jaw clenching and teeth grinding, the dentist might recommend the following treatments:
Apart from preventing dental injuries on people who play contact sports, mouthguards can help people who grind their teeth to avoid wear and tear. If you suffer from unconsciously clenching your jaw during sleep, a mouthguard can help prevent friction that wears the enamel.
Mouthguards or dental splints work by cushioning your teeth and preventing them from grinding against each other during sleep. If you suffer from teeth grinding and jaw clenching, the dentist will take impressions of your teeth and create custom mouthguards to prevent wear and tear.
Since the mouthguards are custom-made, they will offer comfort and are not easy to fall during sleep. The mouthguards vary in degrees of thickness and are fitted depending on the size and shape of your jaw.
Sometimes if you clench jaws and grind your teeth, you might experience tooth sensitivity. To treat such a condition, your dentist might consider reshaping the chewing surfaces. After reshaping the teeth, your dentist will place a dental crown to prevent root canal infections.
However, you might still need therapy to prevent clenching your jaw and gritting your teeth.
How to stop grinding teeth in sleep naturally
There are ways you can prevent clenching your jaw and grinding your teeth naturally, depending on the cause. At Dental TMJ Sleep Apnea, we recommend the following natural remedies:
Yoga and Meditation
Some people clench their jaws and grind their teeth due to stress and anxiety. If you suffer from such a condition, you can try stress-relieving techniques such as yoga and meditation. During yoga, you will feel relaxed, reducing anxiety that causes teeth grinding.
Tongue and Jaw Relaxing Exercises
If you exercise your tongue and jaw muscles, you can facilitate relaxation that causes the jaw to align appropriately. You can try the exercises with the help of a physical therapist, dentist, or at home.
To exercise your tongue and muscles, you can consider the following:
- Open your mouth with your teeth biting the tongue gently, and try saying the letter “N” loudly
- Alternatively, you can try massaging your jaws to ensure proper alignment
However, not all conditions are treatable through natural ways.