Article as provided by Dr. Karishma Jaradi, Aesthetic Dentist at Dentzz Dental
The condition of grinding one’s enamels while you are asleep or throughout the day is termed as bruxism and can result in disturbed slumber and most importantly teeth impairment. The condition can be allied to factors such as daytime anxiety, unwanted stress, excessive caffeine intake and in some cases even sleep apnea.
It is very important to note that Bruxism typically results when a person tends to grind the enamels while not eating. The teeth grind or rub together as the jaw tends to move forcefully either from side to side or in a back and forth direction. In most cases, the person remains unaware that they are doing it. Teeth clasping is when a person holds their enamels together and tightens the muscles, but without moving the teeth back and forth. People may grind or clamp their teeth all through the day and throughout the night, but sleep-related bruxism tends to pose a greater challenge owing to the fact that it is difficult to regulate.
Bruxism is an unconscious neuromuscular activity which can lead to jaw discomfort and stiffness, painful gums, myofascial muscle discomfort, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, sensitive, lose or cracked teeth, popping or clicking of the jaw joints accompanied by dull headaches.
Effects of Bruxism:
Continuous grinding has the ability to wear down the teeth, which can become unsharpened, short, or broken. Gritting tends to put extreme pressure on the muscles, tissues, and other structures surrounding the jaw. Ear pain can also occur partially owing to the fact that the structures of the temporomandibular joint are situated very close to the ear canal. The person also can experience referral pain, in which a person may experience aches in a dissimilar location to its source. Extreme bruxism can harm the occlusal surfaces of the teeth, chiefly the molars. It may also lead to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome.
Causes: Why Do People Grind Their Teeth?
Although grinding of enamels can be a result of stress and anxiety, it often takes place while the person is sleeping and is more possibly caused by an unusual bite or missing or curved teeth. It can also be caused by a typical sleep illness such as sleep apnea. In kids, grinding typically takes place post the first teeth appear, and again when the long-lasting teeth arise. It usually stops on the eruption of the adult teeth.
Bruxism may be connected to an abnormal bite, which implies the teeth do not meet appropriately while the jaw closes. If you notice that the top and bottom of your teeth fail to come together accurately, then you might have an occlusal discrepancy. In some people, the facial muscles tend to spasm while sleeping. Having teeth that are absent or are twisted can prompt the teeth to grind, and frustration may be a major factor. Bruxism can also be a side effect of certain medicines that you may be prescribed. In some cases, neurological conditions like Parkinson’s disease or Huntington’s disease may also contribute to Bruxism. Other aspects that may be related comprises exhaustion, consumption of alcohol, smoking, sleep apnea, and snoring.
Why Is Grinding of teeth Detrimental for tooth health?
In some cases, lingering teeth grinding can lead to fracturing, loosening, or even loss of teeth. There is a possibility that long-lasting grinding may wear teeth down to stumps. When these events occur, crowns, bridges, implants, root canals, partial dentures, and even total dentures may be required. Not only can excessive grinding cause harm to the teeth and result in tooth loss, it can also negatively impact your jaws, lead to TMD/TMJ, and even can totally alter your facial appearance.
Tips to cope up with Bruxism or Teeth grinding
Your dental expert can help you feel at ease by fitting a mouth guard to safeguard your enamels from grinding while you are fast asleep. If it is stress that is leading you to grind your teeth try and engage yourself in activities like meditation that can help relax you. On the other hand, if a sleeping disorder is the main culprit behind the grinding, accurately treating it may help in condensing or eliminating the grinding habit.
Other guidelines to aid in stopping teeth grinding comprise of:
- Avoiding or totally cutting back on edibles and drinks that contain caffeine, such as coffee, chocolate and colas.
- Avert drinking alcohol. Alcohol consumption tends to further intensify grinding.
- Avert from chewing on to pens or pencils or anything that is not consumable. You must try and avoid chewing gum as it allows your jaw muscles to get more accustomed to the habit of clenching and makes you more prone to grinding your teeth.
- You must train yourself not to clasp or grind your teeth. If you witness that you clench or grind throughout the day-time, you must position the tip of your tongue in a way that it comes between your teeth. This practice will train your jaw muscles to unwind.
- During the night, you must ease your jaw muscles by holding a warm washcloth against your cheek facing of your earlobe
- In order to ease the indications of Bruxism, try to get as much rest in the hours prior to bedtime to diminish on anxiety levels and to uphold a steady comforting bedtime routine. It is also significant to generate a sleep environment that is cool relaxed, dark, and quiet. Sleep-related tooth grinding may also be interconnected with back sleeping. Hence one must try side or stomach sleeping to ease signs. Finally, ensure you receive a satisfactory amount of sleep and general physical exercise regularly. Sleep deficiency may upsurge stress and may further worsen tooth grinding.
Teeth grinding is a common condition having a multitude of causes. Treating it on a timely basis is vital to avert grave oral maladies. Your dental expert will help you with good resources for effectively diagnosing and treating bruxism.