A person with bruxism regularly clenches, grinds, or gnashes their teeth with the help of their jaw muscles.All of the teeth may be affected by bruxism, or only the front teeth may be, and it may also cause headaches, face pain, or temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problem as well as other symptoms.
A prescription modification may occasionally be necessary to treat bruxism since some drugs make it more likely to occur.Others might require further assistance, such as stress-relief techniques (people frequently grind their teeth when they’re anxious or under pressure), or wearing a mouth guard while they sleep.
There are two types of bruxism, and they might have different signs and causes:When people are awake, they might have awake bruxism (AB), also known as diurnal bruxism, and symptoms frequently get worse over the day. Women are more likely to have it.
The symptoms of sleep bruxism (SB), also known as nocturnal bruxism, are frequently worse when a person first awakens.
Most of the time, bruxism is not severe enough to create significant issues, and each person’s symptoms will vary based on whether they grind their teeth at night or during the day.
Bruxism symptoms and signs can include:
#1 Jaw muscles that hurt
#2 Tongue or cheek areas that have been chewed
#3 Bruxism of teeth (e.g., chips fractures, worn enamel, flattened tops, loose teeth)
#4 Sleep disturbance brought on by being awakened by the sound of grounding
#5 Ear pain,without having a ear infection
#6 Headaches (including tension headaches from day grinding and morning headaches for nighttime bruxism)
#7 Neck aches or pains
#8 Your sleeping companion gets awakened by the noise of your grinding or clenching.
#9 Painful face aches
#10 Teeth that are extremely sensitive to pressure, cold, or heat
#11 Disorder of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ)
Because they may hear their loved one grinding their teeth at night, a sleep partner or parent is frequently the one to first identify the signs of bruxism in their child or relative.
During a dental examination, the dentist will look for damaged or fractured teeth, damage to the inside of the cheek, soreness in the jaw muscles, and TMJ in order to diagnose bruxism. To check for damage to the underlying bone tissue, your dentist might also take an X-ray.
You could also be needed to participate in a sleep study to analyse teeth-grinding episodes and identify any sleep-related disorders because bruxism is linked to a higher risk of sleep apnea.
Risk factors and the causes
There are numerous factors that can cause someone to grind their teeth. Additionally, there are a number of things that could make someone more likely to clench or grind their teeth, such as:
Age: Children are more likely than adults to grind their teeth. In reality, 15% to 40% of toddlers and 8% to 10% of adults experience bruxism related to sleep. 4
Emotions: Suppressed anger, worry, tension, and frustration are all possible causes of teeth grinding.
Bruxism frequently runs in families due to genetics.
If a parent had bruxism, the likelihood of a child developing it was almost two times higher.
Medication: According to research, some drugs, particularly those prescribed to treat psychiatric problems, have been shown to cause bruxism.
It is believed that these medicines alter the central nervous system, causing jaw clenching and teeth grinding. Antipsychotics and antidepressants, especially selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) like Prozac (fluoxetine), Zoloft (sertraline), and Paxil, are examples of such drugs (paroxetine).
Personality: Neuroticism is one personality attribute that has been linked to bruxism.
Substance abuse: The risk of bruxism may be increased by cigarette smoking, caffeine, alcohol, and recreational drug usage.
Additionally, bruxism has been linked to a number of medical disorders. These consist of:
#1 Hyperactivity/attention deficit disorder (ADHD)
#5 Night terrors
#6 Parkinson’s condition
#7 Sleep apnea (and other sleep-related disorders)
It is really easy to treat bruxism. Finding out what makes you grind your teeth and focusing your treatment on that issue are the keys to a good recovery.
A therapist may be able to help you if your constant tension or anxiety is causing you to clench and grind your teeth.It’s possible that your bruxism will stop once you’ve resolved the emotional problems that are making you uncomfortable.
Modifying sleeping patterns and using relaxation techniques might both benefit from counselling. If other methods are unsuccessful in getting you to quit grinding your teeth, biofeedback might be worth a shot. This technique teaches you to manage the muscle activity in your jaw through the use of monitoring techniques and equipment. 6
Splint therapy and mouthguards
A mouthguard, sometimes referred to as an appliance or an occlusal splint, may be beneficial if you grind your teeth at sleep. Various mouth guards can be worn across either the top or bottom teeth. They might serve another purpose in addition to keeping your jaw in a more relaxed position.
There is not enough information on the effectiveness of the numerous drugs that have been tested to treat bruxism. However, there is some proof that some drugs could be useful in treating bruxism. When teeth grinding is not brought on by a drug or underlying illness, muscle relaxants and even Botox injections have demonstrated promise as temporary remedies. 7
If a drug is the source of your bruxism, your doctor may suggest switching to a different medicine or adjusting your dose.
Try these at-home remedies if your bruxism is hurting you:
#1 Avoid chewing gum because it could make the pain worse.
#2 Avoid tough foods like steak, nuts, hard candies, and other such items.
#3 Throughout the day, try to keep your face relaxed. Self-massage could be beneficial.
#4 Look for tiny, painful nodules known as trigger points on your head and face that can cause pain.
#5 Stress management. Go for a walk, take a bubble bath, or play your favourite music. Learn to relax by doing mindfulness practises, deep breathing exercises, or meditation.
#6Modify your actions. With your dentist, go over several procedures for maintaining healthy mouth and jaw alignment.
#7 Avoid eating or drinking anything with caffeine before bed if you have a tendency to grind your teeth while you sleep. Evening use of tobacco and alcohol can exacerbate bruxism. 8
#8 Maintain good oral hygiene so that your dentist can keep an eye on any potential tooth damage.
#9 Maintain a healthy sleep routine.