It's estimated that about 15% of teenagers and 8% of adults grind their teeth while sleeping.
This condition is called bruxism and can be caused by various reasons. However, if left untreated, it can lead to significant damage to your teeth and jaw.
So, what causes bruxism and will a nightguard be enough to protect your teeth?
Let's find out!
There isn't just one reason that can be blamed for your bruxism. For example, stress and anxiety are common causes, as they can lead to a build-up of tension in the jaw muscles.
Other potential causes include sleep disorders, such as sleep apnea, and certain medications. Improper tooth alignment can also lead to bruxism.
In some cases, the cause of bruxism is simply not known.
A lot of the time, people find out that they are grinding their teeth during regular dental check-ups as their dentist points out that their teeth are worn out.
People who grind their teeth at night also tend to wake up with a dull headache in the morning.
Other symptoms may include:
If you experience any of these symptoms, it's important to speak with your dentist to determine if you have bruxism and look for the best treatment for you.
Teeth grinding can lead to premature wear and tear of your teeth as well as a variety of TMJ problems. That's why we here at Bauer Dental Company will likely recommend a night guard to protect your teeth.
A night guard works by creating a barrier between the upper and lower teeth, which prevents the teeth from coming into contact with each other. This can help to reduce the amount of damage that is caused by grinding, and can also help to reduce pain and discomfort.
However, a night guard will only treat the symptoms, not the cause of the bruxism. We here at Bauer Dental Company will also try to determine why you have bruxism in the first place and recommend the appropriate treatment. For example, if your bruxism is caused by misaligned teeth, we will recommend orthodontic treatment.
You can opt between types of night guards: custom-fit and over-the-counter.
Custom-fit night guards are made by your dentist and are tailored to fit your teeth perfectly. These are the most effective type of night guard and are the best option for people who grind their teeth heavily.
Over-the-counter night guards are less expensive and can be purchased at most drugstores. They are not as effective as custom-fit night guards, but can still provide some protection for the teeth.