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Bruxism is a condition associated with grinding your teeth at night. In adults it is often related to unresolved, chronic stress. Some people have also started grinding their teeth due to allergies.
The excess pressure and grinding motion can cause dental fractures on multiple teeth. As time goes on the damaged tooth enamel can start to trap residual food material and plaque. In time, this could cause large cavities to form on an already compromised tooth.
Grinding your teeth on a regular basis can also cause complications in the temporomandibular joints that hinge your jaw. This can cause inflammation in the joints as well as problems with the complex muscles and connective tissues that move your jaw. The pain and discomfort from TMJ disorder can gradually have a significant impact on your overall quality of life.
One easy way to preserve the health of your teeth and temporomandibular joints is to sleep with a dental guard in your mouth. This is a soft plastic mouthpiece that you wear in your mouth shortly before going to sleep at night and it will cushion your teeth.
If you find that the dental guards sold in stores are uncomfortable, you might want to ask your dentist to fit you for a custom dental guard. It will be custom shaped to match your unique bite pattern. The modest amount of slip it allows can reduce the tension and resulting inflammation in the temporomandibular joints.
If you live in the Staten Island, New York, area and you’ve struggled with chronic night grinding, you should call 718-948-4393 to schedule an appointment at Dental Arts Center. Dr. Matthew Scaffa and our team will be happy to help you get a healthy, comfortable smile!