Teeth grinding and clenching, also called Bruxism, is a common but serious issue as it can be very destructive to more than just your teeth. Bruxism is caused by clenched jaw muscles, which can occur either when you are awake or asleep, but sleep bruxism is a more serious issue to treat as many people are not even aware of this problem. The common cause of teeth grinding is stress and anxiety. Other causes include the use of tobacco, alcohol, caffeine, an abnormal bite, and sleep apnea. It can even lead to detrimental health issues if not treated timely. If you are someone who struggles with teeth grinding or clenching, Madison Family Dental Associates can help.
Symptoms and Side effects of Bruxism
Patients with Bruxism may suffer from various symptoms such as teeth grinding, tooth pain or sensitivity, jaw soreness, facial pain, and waking up with dull headaches. The headache starts with an earache and then spreads to your jaw and neck. You may also find it difficult to open and close your jaw completely. Moreover, it can lead to fatigue in the muscles surrounding the jaw. Bruxism can also damage your previous dental work. It has some side effects, including broken teeth, worn tooth enamel, chipped teeth, and flattened teeth.
Night Guards and Their Types
Bruxism can be treated by wearing a night guard, also known as a mouthguard. Bruxism works as a barrier between your teeth, so when you clench your jaw, the mouthguard reduces the tension. It also works as a cushion to the muscles in your jaw, which also protects your teeth' enamel.
One of the most commonly used types of night guards is the soft night guard. It is used to treat mild cases. The soft night guard is a very cost-effective and most comfortable fit when compared to other night guards, making it quite easy to get used to. But it has a limited lifespan because most of us unintentionally bite the soft material. A dual laminate night guard is another type. It works best for moderately severe cases and deals with heavy clenching and grinding. It has an extended warranty. The third and final type of night guard is known as hard night guards. They are used to treat severe cases of teeth grinding and clenching. They are very rigid as they are made from acrylic. They are the most durable of all the night guards. It offers the longest life span. It also prevents teeth from shifting.
The muscles of our body tend to relax right before we go into a deep sleep. When the muscles in our body relax, the excess tissue in our neck and airway can block the airflow through which we breathe, which causes interruptions in our breathing and is called sleep apnea. Sometimes, our brain gives our jaw signals to clench and grind to keep the airway open so we can breathe. These signals help keep the air flowing but do not let us get into a deep sleep, affecting our physical and mental health. For further information, please call Madison Family Dental Associates at 608-274-5970 today.
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Madison, WI 53719
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DeForest, WI 53532
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