Signs of Bruxism and How Your Dentist Can Help
Bruxism is a condition in which patients clench, grind, or gnash their teeth. Adults struggling with this dental condition can even unconsciously clench their teeth during the day or night while asleep. During a dental exam at Advanced Dentistry of Centre County, our dental experts will check for signs of bruxism and provide helpful tips or treatment options to stop teeth grinding. If you're concerned about teeth grinding symptoms, contact our dental practice or schedule a dental exam online with our team today.
What are signs of bruxism?
The act of clenching or grinding teeth during the day or at night, also known as bruxism, is an everyday issue that affects many adults. Various factors can cause bruxism, such as stress, anxiety, an irregular bite due to overcrowded or crooked teeth, and sleep apnea. The most prominent signs of bruxism are:
- Enamel erosion
- Worn tooth restorations
- Headaches or jaw pain
- Painful discomfort in the neck or shoulder area
- Gum recession
What is the connection between sleep apnea and teeth grinding?
Nocturnal bruxism occurs when the airway becomes constricted, and muscles in the mouth mimic chewing to allow the airway to reopen, leading to teeth grinding. Another reason could be that clenching the jawbone or grinding teeth triggers the body to produce more saliva, helping to lubricate the back of the throat during labored breathing. Sleep-related bruxism has shown to be a way for the body to protect itself from the effects of this sleeping disorder. During a dental examination, our dental experts will be on the lookout for signs of bruxism and will help you determine the best course of care and treatment.
Teeth grinding treatment options
Our dental experts will evaluate your jaw and mouth to determine the right course of action to treat signs of bruxism. Our experts will provide and manage the entire treatment course if you are a candidate for orthodontic care to correct bite misalignment. Occlusal adjustments, along with jaw exercises and warm compresses, can help minimize any discomfort associated with jaw clenching symptoms.
Studies have shown that adults who struggle with a sleep disorder are prone to grind their teeth. If we suspect a patient is struggling with sleep apnea symptoms, it can be addressed with a custom-made night mouth guard. This oral appliance has proven highly effective at hindering teeth grinding at night, keeping the lower and upper teeth in good alignment while sleeping. They also protect your bone structure and teeth from further damage that results from the friction of clenching or grinding. At Advanced Dentistry of Centre County, our team will take oral impressions to create a custom mouth guard to be worn comfortably at night while you sleep. State College, PA patients will also be instructed on how to properly care for their night guard to get the most out of this dental appliance.
Do you need a dentist in State College, PA?
If you are concerned about sleep apnea, signs of bruxism, or looking for a custom-made mouth guard to stop grinding your teeth, contact Advanced Dentistry in Centre County. We can assist you in scheduling a consultation with one of our dentists in State College, PA, and get your oral health back on track.