Bruxism is the clenching or grinding of teeth, or both of them together. It is usually a greater problem at night when one is unaware that they are doing it. Often the patient’s partner will be the first to notice it as they can hear the noise coming from the other side of the bed. It is commonly believed that this subconscious nighttime bruxism is due to stress and anxiety. It also could be a bite problem.
Teeth grinding occurs in 5% to 20% of adults, and affects approximately 30% of children.
More than half of children afflicted with teeth grinding (bruxism) will cease to grind their teeth on their own by the age of 13. Nocturnal bruxism is tooth grinding that occurs during sleep, and sufferers are typically unaware that they are suffering tooth damage as they slumber.
Botulinum toxin injections into the massetter and temporalis muscles result in relaxation of the muscles and improvement of bruxism and the pain assosciated with grinding. This is an adjunct treatment to wearing occlusal splint.
Grinding can damage teeth by scraping and wearing away the surface. This can be cosmetic problem, as teeth shorten and change shape, and can lead to sensitive teeth as the enamel becomes worn. Clenching can cause muscle strain and fatigue, earaches and headaches, and put severe stress on the hinge of the jaw, the temporomandibular joint.
At Evercare Dental Group you will recieve a thorough examination to see if your teeth or dental work has been damaged by the bruxing. Though there is no sure treatment for bruxism, it has been positively linked to stress and anxiety.
To prevent damage to your teeth, a custom-fitted plastic appliance (Occlusal Splint) will be fabricated for you to wear when you sleep. This helps reduce the pressure of tooth grinding and helps prevent further damage to your teeth.