Teeth Grinding

Teeth Grinding – Bruxism – Occlusal Guards for Teeth Grinding Prevention

Prevent Teeth Grinding Worn Tooth Enamel Cracking and Chipping with Occlusal Guards | North Hunter Dental-Birmingham, MIEvaluating the Problem – Unnatural Teeth Grinding or Clenching
One of the most common dental problems most people aren't even aware they are doing is grinding their teeth.  Better known in dental terms as bruxism, Grinding your teeth can happen at any time especially during sleep when a person is under a lot of stress.

Do You Grind Your Teeth?
Most people aren't even aware they are grinding their teeth. Protecting your teeth from grinding with a mouth guard is one of the best ways to insure that you don't keep putting this kind of undue stress and wear on your teeth and jaws

Dr. Sansone will closely examine your teeth for any signs of teeth grinding and confirm that you are definitely grinding your teeth. By answering a series of questions, we can also determine the reason for the grinding and help you start working on eliminating the cause. Stress is usually the number one reason people grind their teeth. Other signs of grinding your teeth may be that your jaw feels tired and sore, teeth are sensitive, some teeth have loosened, you're getting earaches and headaches, neck aches and even hear a clicking sound when you open your mouth.

Types of Damage Caused by Grinding Teeth:

1.) Teeth grinding can cause the tooth enamel to chip
2.) Can cause cracks in teeth
3.) Can cause teeth to become flattened and excessively worn down
4.) Can cause teeth to become loosened
5.) Can cause gum problems
6.) Can damage your crowns and bridges with surface cracks and chips
7.) Can cause earaches, headaches and neck aches
If left untreated, teeth grinding can lead to jaw muscle and joint problems, even loss of teeth.

Treatment for Teeth Grinding
Dr. Sansone may suggest one or more treatments based on the cause of your teeth grinding:

1.) Mouth Guard – Start wearing a mouth guard at night while you sleep. This is a plastic device that is custom molded to the shape of your teeth so it snaps in place comfortably. North Hunter Dental can mold and fabricate your mouth guard to fit exactly to your teeth. The best time to wear a mouth guard is at night while sleeping as this is the time when most teeth grinding occurs.

2.) Bite Adjustment – Correcting an uneven bite where your top teeth fit against the bottom teeth can help emilinate unnecessary grinding.

3.)  Reducing Stress – Learning to relax your jaw muscles by reducing the stress in your life can greatly reduce the amount of grinding that occurs especially at night while sleeping. Sometimes medication may be prescribed to help relax jaw muscles and reduce stress.

4.) Repairing Teeth Damage – Excessive grinding and clamping down on teeth unknowingly can cause crack lines and chips on teeth. Crowns and partial crowns (onlays) are ways to repair the damage done to teeth caused by excessive teeth grinding.

How to Wear Your Mouth Guard
Because a mouth guard is mostly worn at night it is sometimes referred to as a night guard. It may be fitted to wear on the top teeth or the bottom teeth. Dr. Sansone will instruct you on how to wear it and how to care for it.

Tips for Mouth Guard Care:

1.) Always rinse the mouth guard before and after wearing it.
2.) Soak your mouth guard in water when not using it. Put a little water in the holding tray where you store your mouth guard. This keeps it from drying out and becoming brittle.
3.) Clean your mouth guard with a toothbrush and a little toothpaste or liquid soap after using it.
4.) Check your mouth guard for sign of wear or stress cracks. Bring it in with you at your next dental checkup so it can be inspected, cleaned, repaired or replaced do to wear and tear.

American Dental Association says that a mouth guard is a very important piece of athletic gear.
North Hunter Dental also offers Custom Athletic Mouth guards for all levels of all Sports.