Clenching and Grinding

What is bruxism?

Bruxism, or teeth grinding and clenching, can cause serious damage to your smile. Each night, the teeth can rub against one another, putting heavy forces on the teeth, wearing away the teeth and irritating the jaw. Bruxism is very common but not always consciously done. Some people have absolutely no symptoms whilst others can suffer from daily headaches, pain, and stiffness in their facial muscles and jaw joint.

Regardless of the degree of pain and discomfort caused by bruxism, it can cause significant long-term damage to your teeth and jaws.

As people are not always aware of clenching and grinding their teeth it is important to have regular dental check-ups to assess for signs of bruxism. These include flattening and wearing of the teeth as well as signs of cracks and chipping.

What causes bruxism?
The exact cause of why people grind their teeth is unknown, but the following are believed to be major contributing factors:

  • Anxiety or everyday stress
  •  Obstructive sleep apnea
  •  Some medications and recreational drugs
What is a dental night guard?
A dental night guard or occlusal splint is a custom made appliance that fits over the dental arch. It acts as a cushion and prevents the teeth of the top and bottom jaws from touching. An occlusal splint protects your teeth from wearing down as well as reducing the stress placed on your teeth, jaws and facial muscles.

If a night guard is not the best option for you, other options can also be explored. This may include;

  • Rebuilding key teeth in your mouth for improved protection and support
  •  Physiotherapy and jaw exercises
  •  Muscle relaxant injections to help relax the jaw muscles
  • Anti inflammatory medications
  • Stress management/lifestyle changes
  •  Surgery

During consultation we will establish the nature of your condition and customise a plan that will assist in restoring you back to health. Contact our friendly staff for more information or to make an appointment.

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3/362 Warburton Highway, Wandin North, VIC, 3139

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