Teeth grinding, or bruxism, is a rhythmic clenching of the jaws while grinding the teeth. This can commence at any age and usually occurs unconsciously when asleep. Most teeth grinders wake up with a splitting headache apart from stiff shoulders and neck and ear pain. They also tend to suffer sleep disorders plus early wearing of the teeth which leads to fracture and loss. Check this post from Dr.Chaben, Livonia’s top dentist to know about seven ways that you can use to prevent teeth grinding in sleep.
1) Reduce Stress
Research indicates that 70% of sufferers grind their teeth owing to intense stress and anxiety. If this is a possible case for you, try yoga, meditation and take stress-relieving treatments to reduce stress and spare your teeth.
2) Wear a Bite Guard
A bite guard goes by many names – occlusal splints, night guards, bite plates and so on. You can get them custom made and specially fitted to wear over your teeth. A night bite guard will reduce pain in the jaw muscle and protect your teeth.
3) Check With A Professional
Visit a maxillofacial surgeon to get your problem checked out if it’s very severe. The surgeon may recommend an occlusal appliance. Given that teeth clenching is part of how we handle stress, the surgeon may also recommend psychoanalysis.
4) Visit A Psychoanalyst
Those with ADHD or other hyperactive behavioral issues experience higher levels of bruxism. If your teeth grinding is excessive and you’re struggling with a headache and tooth loss and other side effects, consult a psychoanalyst.
5) Set Right Misaligned Teeth
During your consultation with your oral surgeon, you can find out if your bruxism seems to be caused by incorrect teeth alignment. If this is the case, correcting your misalignment may help reduce teeth grinding.
6) Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol
Avoid taking stimulants during the evening, such as caffeine, alcohol, tea, and soda. Taking stimulants before sleep disrupts the quality of your sleep, which increases the possibility of teeth clenching. Avoid anything that adversely affects your sleep quality.
7) Take A Muscle Relaxant
If your bruxism is severe, you may need to take a muscle relaxant. Don’t do this without consulting with your dentist though. Take a muscle relaxant before sleep to keep your jaws from clenching throughout the night.
8) Try Acupuncture
Chinese Acupuncture, if done right, can calm the tension that causes nightly bruxism. This hasn’t been clinically proven, but acupuncture has been known to reduce pain, and people have reported that regular acupuncture treatments have reduced their bruxism.
9) Train Yourself Not To Grind Your Teeth
If you’re in the habit of chewing pencils hard or chewing gum, stop both habits. These habits make your jaw muscles get accustomed to clenching.
Even with all the appliances and treatment, preventing teeth grinding depends a lot on the patient. Be aware that you have this problem and frequently watch how hard your jaw is clenching. Keep calm throughout the day and you’ll be able to slowly lose your teeth grinding habit.