I THINK I GRIND MY TEETH
Nighttime teeth grinding causes a lot of damage. Many people grind their teeth while they sleep. We call it bruxism. Obviously you don't know you are doing it because you are asleep. Your spouse/significant other doesn't know it either because they are asleep! You may have some clues because you wake up with sore teeth or a sore jaw. Or, maybe your bite feels off for the first half hour you are awake. Or maybe you have recently fractured a tooth. There are tell tale tooth wear patterns we look for at your exam that signal nighttime grinding issues. This is treated with a night guard MADE BY YOUR DENTIST. I know, the over the counter ones are a lot cheaper. At first. But, the most important part of the night guard is the bite. You can't adjust the bite on an over the counter night guard. A misaligned bite on the guard can lead to changes in your bite requiring orthodontics to fix, or INCREASED damage to teeth because all of your bite force is only on a couple teeth. Research is now showing that you clench during sleep grinding with 25% more force than you can tolerate when you are awake. Think about that for a moment. Clench your teeth as hard as you can stand. You are doing it much harder while you are sleeping. That can easily fracture a tooth.
Common Dental Problems
- My tooth hurts!
- I feel a hole in my tooth
- A piece of my tooth broke off
- My teeth are sensitive to cold things
- My gums bleed when I brush. Is that normal?
- I'm embarrassed to smile
- I wish my teeth were whiter