Teeth Grinding and Clenching Can Do a Number on Your Teeth

June 7, 2011

People who grind their teeth often think of it as just a bad habit that they need to break. If you grind your teeth, however, you know how it feels to wake up with a sore jaw, headaches, and earaches, and you’re not alone. About one third of the population grind their teeth habitually.

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is often caused by stress, anxiety, tension, misaligned teeth, posture, diet, sleeping habits, and other factors. Constant clenching and grinding of your teeth can also contribute to TMJ dysfunction, which has a long list of side effects associated with pain in the head and neck and wearing down of the teeth.

Believe it or not, getting rid of your bruxism is a lot easier than trying to break the habit. All you need is a nightguard to prevent grinding and clenching. Many types of nightguards are available, and patients react differently to the various styles. If one appliance does not work, another may. In many cases, simply wearing a nightguard as directed by your dentist will eliminate the problem.

Dr. Brad Greenfield is a family dentist in Lake Orion, Michigan and treats patients of all ages for a variety of different dental needs. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call Lake Orion Family Dentistry at (248) 693-6213.

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