In our last blog, we took a look at a common jaw joint disorder known as TMD. In today’s blog, we would like to discuss a related issue, bruxism. This disorder occurs when you grind and clench your teeth regularly. But how do you know if you have bruxism? Let’s look at what causes the disorder and when you should see your Astoria, NY, dentist for treatment.
The Warning Signs of Bruxism
Since bruxism involves regularly grinding and clenching the teeth, this means the teeth undergo enormous amounts of pressure. As the enamel wears away and the teeth themselves sometime crack or chip, tooth sensitivity and toothaches are common. Pain in the face or jaw may also arise, as well as frequent headaches. If you begin to experience persistent pain in and around your face or jaw, then please let us know right away so we can perform a diagnosis and see if you require treatment.
Causes and Complications
The disorder could develop as a result of tooth loss, bite imbalance, dental misalignment, injury to the face or jaw, or untreated TMJ disorder. Without treatment, the damage could increase the risk of tooth decay and dental infection, leading to issues with the overall health and stability of your smile. If we discover signs of wear and friction on your teeth when we examine you, we will prescribe treatment to help protect your smile from further damage and uncomfortable symptoms.
Often, we will take detailed impressions and measurements of your teeth to create a custom-made oral appliance, which looks and fits much like a nightguard. The device helps reposition the jaw to ease pressure on the jaw joints, and also provides a barrier between the upper and lower sets of teeth to avoid additional damage. We could also use orthodontics to correct misalignment, or may employ a custom-made restoration like a dental crown to restore bite balance. Other tips include cutting back on caffeine consumption, and avoiding chewing on hard objects, like ice, pens, or pencils. You should also consider trying to reduce the stress in your daily life. If you have any questions about identifying and treating bruxism, then please contact our team today. We can help you start 2020 with better oral health and a more attractive smile!
Do You Need Treatment?
If you have headaches and pain in and around your jaw, then you may need treatment for bruxism. With an array of treatment options, we can identify and address the factors behind your teeth grinding and jaw clenching, improving your overall oral health. For more information on our approach to preventive and general dental care, then schedule a consultation, call Jeffrey Leibowitz, DDS, in Astoria, NY, today at 718-728-8320.