Bruxism is a condition where you excessively grind your teeth. People with Bruxism typically grind their teeth or clench their jaws at night when they are asleep and unaware. Unfortunately, this means that a lot of people may have a serious condition and never know it.
For some, the jaw clinching and teeth grinding happen during the day. If you have this daytime version, it is easy to notice that you have this condition, and, therefore can get immediate treatment. What is mostly seen as a nervous tick, can, however destroy your teeth if action is not taken to remedy the problem.
There are different causes for Bruxism, but the most common include misaligned teeth and/or jaw, stress and tic disorders. Bruxism is usually an aftereffect of a motor tic, where your muscles tic, or involuntarily twitch. The muscles in your jaws can involuntarily cause you to grind your teeth or clench your jaw. If you are clenching your teeth at night, it can be difficult to pinpoint the cause, especially if it is due to stress or a tic disorder. To see if it is stress, try to identify what is new in your life that might be causing you to worry or be uneasy. Most tic disorders can be quickly diagnosed by your doctor.
Symptoms of Bruxism
As most people with Bruxism experience the negative effects of it at night while asleep, it can be difficult to self-diagnose and therefore, it is extremely important to mention it to your dentist. If you’re not sure if you have Bruxism, especially if you think you experience it at night, here are some possible warning signs:
- Wake up in the morning with a sore jaw
- Have muscle soreness in your face and temple areas
- You notice scrapes, tears and cuts on the insides of your cheeks
- You notice your gums are receding
- Your teeth are unusually worn down
- Your teeth are sensitive to sweets and temperatures
- You find it painful to chew and bite down
How Bruxism Destroys Teeth
Bruxism is a potentially devastating disorder that often goes unnoticed. This is most likely because it is not seen as a big problem. But it is. Prolonged teeth grinding can cause excessive wear and tear of your teeth. It can also loosen teeth to the point where they fall out. The friction of clenching and grinding can scrape away your teeth’s protective enamel (which doesn’t grow back) making teeth vulnerable to decay, cavities and infections. Gum disease and gum recession can also occur as teeth are loosened during the grinding and clenching.
Bruxism can also leave your mouth feeling pain and soreness. Your teeth and jaws can also become misaligned which can cause additional problems in the future that will likely require surgery, even a full-mouth rehabilitation.
If you wake up in the morning feeling one or more of the aforementioned symptoms, come and discuss it with us promptly. You may have Bruxism and have been slowly destroying your teeth without knowing it. Let us help you keep your teeth and maintain your oral health.