While it is not uncommon for an individual to grind or clench their teeth during their life, if it becomes a reoccuring event then it can risk damaging your oral health. Our dentists in Whitby are here to help discuss treatment options if you feel that you or somebody you know suffers from persistent tooth grinding or clenching.
Bruxism is the term used for the act of grinding and clenching your teeth. Many people may be unaware of the fact that they do this, due to the fact that some people only grind their teeth while sleeping. This is called “nocturnal bruxism” or “sleep-related bruxism” and may only be recognizable by soreness the following morning or eventual damage. However, bruxism does not only occur during the night, it is possible for patients to habitually grind or clench their teeth during the day. Both of these types of bruxism are often caused by factors such as stress, changes in one’s lifestyle, or even genetic factors.
The risk of bruxism is largely due to the fact that repeated wear can damage dental restorations such as fillings or crowns, or even natural teeth. This damage can occur by wearing down the outer layers of enamel and result in tooth sensitivity or shortened teeth. Additionally, issues can occur outside the mouth through symptoms such as a sore neck, tension headaches or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders. In some instances, your dentist may recommend a night guard to help discourage grinding or reduce the risk of further damage. These oral appliances are often made in a lab and customized to the individual’s mouth.
However, bruxism is not something that only occurs later in life. Tooth grinding treatment for kids is a common request within kids dentistry in Whitby, and if it is habitual, then it is typically recommended to stop the habit early.
If you feel that you or somebody you know is grinding or clenching their teeth at an amount that risks damaging their oral health, contact Whitby Smile Centre today. Our staff will be more than happy to meet with you to discuss your oral health. We are also now accepting new patients in Whitby.