Night Time Tooth Grinding

Night time tooth grinding is a sleep disorder also known as “sleep bruxism” that  effects up to 8{f3df2321d6d44932a0389a054de5e5bc05a1aa36f3d1fe83659ab7c6ce3ad49d} of adults. It occurs much more frequently in children, but most will grow out of it by age twelve. Adults that grind their teeth at night may awake with headaches, sore jaw joints, sore jaw muscles or chipped and worn teeth. Occasionally there are no symptoms, but the noise of your teeth grinding may disrupt your sleep, as well as the sleep of family members.

The cause of night time tooth grinding is not well understood. We know that some people are more susceptible to it than others. We also know that those people who grind their teeth may not do so every night.

Risk factors associated with night time tooth grinding may include:

  • Airway problems
  • Stress
  • Obesity
  • Certain types of medications
  • Neurologic disorders
  • Untreated bite problems

Treatment option that can reduce or minimize night time tooth grinding

  • Diagnosis and treat airway/breathing issues and occlusal bite issues
  • Manage stress and obesity
  • Protection by use of a custom mouthguard

Night time tooth grinding that is left untreated may cause permanent damage to your jaw joint and teeth. Besides breaking and wearing down teeth, grinding irritates the nerves in your teeth and can cause hot, cold and chewing pain in your teeth. Tooth grinding may also lead to chronic headaches and chewing muscle sensitivity during the day.

It is advised to seek a diagnosis from your dentist and options for treatment to prevent permanent damage to the jaw joint and teeth.