If you wake up with tooth or jaw pain, you might be grinding your teeth while you sleep. There are many causes of teeth grinding, from stress and anxiety, to having too much caffeine before bed or an involuntary response due to the alignment of your jaw. Unfortunately, it can damage your teeth's enamel and even crack a crown or other dental restoration. Here are some tips for putting a stop to the grinding.
Resolve the Cause of the Grinding
The best thing you can do when you find out you are grinding your teeth at night is to figure out why you are doing it. You might find that your jaw tends to hurt more the morning after a particularly stressful night, so you know your cause. If you have stress or anxiety, consult a doctor to get proper counseling or medications. This should help with grinding. If you grind your teeth due to a medical condition, such as sleep apnea, that needs to be addressed as well.
Get a Custom Mouth Guard
IN some cases, the grinding is involuntary, and you never actually figure out why you're doing. When this happens, it can be hard to put a stop to the root cause. It helps to get a custom-made mouth guard from your dentist, as the grinding and clenching will stop. You won't be able to grind your teeth together since they are protected by the soft material of the guard. Since it is custom-made, it is comfortable and easy to sleep with.
Reduce Stimulants Before Bed
Another potential cause of teeth grinding is due to being stimulated before you go to sleep. If you have a habit of consuming caffeine, such as soft drinks, coffee or even chocolate before bed, now is a good time to stop. If you like having warm drinks in the evening, switch to hot tea that doesn't have caffeine in it. It is also a good idea to reduce alcohol before bed since alcohol consumption can exacerbate the grinding and clenching of the teeth.
Unfortunately, wearing braces or having the tooth surfaces need to be corrected in some cases. Your dentist might find that based on the type of teeth grinding you are doing, it is worsened by the alignment of your teeth and jaw, or how the surfaces of your teeth meet. You may need to have the surfaces of your teeth or crowns adjusted to fit more closely together. Getting braces to realign your teeth and jaw can make a big difference in how bad the grinding is.Share
7 January 2016
When I had my first child, I was a nervous wreck. Every book I read gave different advice, and I just wanted to be right! By the time I had my third child, some of the stress had abated. I now realised, there were tons of different perspectives on everything related to raising children including dentistry. To help parents, I have created this blog dedicated to unraveling dental myths about children. I am including posts that weigh both sides of issues such as thumb sucking, dental caries, breastfeeding, flossing and any other topic I can think of. I hope you find the information you need to unravel dental myths, but most importantly, I hope you find some peace of mind. With kids and dentistry, there can be more than one right answer, and I want you to be able to relax and go with the answer that's right for you.