Bruxism – also known as teeth grinding. It is a dental condition that can wear down the enamel on your tooth, therefore causing tooth decay and discomfort. There are lots of reasons as to why you may be suffering from bruxism and it’s usually linked to factors such as stress, anxiety and sleep problems. The main issue with bruxism is that many patients are completely unaware that they are doing and it’s only when they visit us for a standard check-up that we get to the bottom of these issues.
Symptoms of Bruxism
Symptoms are not always crystal clear but if you are experiencing any of the following, then you may need to book in with one of experienced dental team to come and see us;-
Common symptoms of bruxism include:
- Stiffness in Jaw.
- Disrupted Sleep.
- Broken Teeth.
- Broken Fillings.
What are the main causes of Bruxism?
Teeth grinding is commonly a direct result of stress, fear, anger and anxiety. If you are going through a difficult period in your life or you’re under immense stress, it’s not uncommon to develop Bruxism. The main symptom of sleep bruxism is unconscious clenching and grinding of the teeth during sleep. These movements can resemble chewing but generally involve more force. Teeth grinding and clenching normally happens when you are asleep so many patients are completely unaware that they are doing it. Other causes of teeth grinding include;-
- Medicines – Specific antidepressants can sometimes cause teeth grinding. It’s important to ask your GP when being prescribed about all potential side-effects so that you can fully understand what may happen. Alternatively read the notes that accompany the medicines to get a fuller understanding.
- Sleep Disorders – If you suffer from sleep disorders such as sleep apnoea, you are much more likely to grind your teeth while you’re asleep. Furthermore, you may also grind your teeth if you have sleep paralysis or have regular hallucinations.
- Lifestyle Choices – How you live your life and every day factors can also contribute to Bruxism. Heavy consumption of alcohol or using recreational drugs can increase chances of consistent teeth clenching and grinding.
For younger children, treatment may not be necessary. Many outgrow bruxism without treatment and many adults don’t grind their teeth badly enough to require professional treatment. However, if the problem is moderate to severe and it’s taking a toll on your dental health and wearing down enamel, we can offer a few different treatments including;-
Splints & Mouth Guards – These are designed to keep teeth separated to avoid the damage caused by clenching and grinding. They can be constructed of hard acrylic or soft materials and fit over your upper or lower teeth.
Dental Correction – In severe cases — when tooth wear has led to sensitivity or the inability to chew properly — your dentist may need to reshape the chewing surfaces of your teeth or use crowns to repair the damage.
Can teeth grinding happen in children?
Yes, teeth grinding can happen and affect children. Teeth grinding and teeth clenching in younger children usually happen after baby teeth or adult teeth first appear, but it’s likely that they will grow out of the habit once adult teeth are fully formed.
Contact Westbury Dental Care
If you require an emergency dental appointment with us due to suffering from moderate to severe toothache, get in touch with us by calling us directly on 020 8942 8943. We will do our utmost to see you as soon as we possibly can.