Funny sounds coming from your jaw or teeth when you open and close your mouth? Do you wake up with a funny ache in your jaw or your head? There is a strong possibility that you could be grinding your teeth at night, which is causing the funny sounds in the jaw and the headache.
Teeth grinding usually occur at night and this phenomenon is medically known as bruxism. It may not, however, be an alarming dental issue, but it can lead to gum problems and misalignment of teeth in some cases. More often than not, teeth grinding can cause the teeth to erode. Hence, knowing how to stop teeth grinding can prevent this dental problem in the future.
There Are Many Reasons Behind Bruxism
- Stress and behavioural issued is also known to be one the triggers for teeth grinding
- Missing teeth, broken teeth can also cause bruxism
- Sleep disorders also cause teeth grinding,
- Some neurological disorders such as Huntington’s disease and Parkinson’s disease can also lead to bruxism.
- Some forms of medications, especially those to treat psychiatric illnesses can trigger bruxism.
Tips To Stop Teeth Grinding
- Reduce intake of foods and drinks which contain caffeine. Lower the consumption of chocolate, coffee and colas
- Stay away from alcohol as teeth grinding tends to increase after consuming alcohol.
- Constantly make an effort to relax the jaw muscles and keep reminding yourself not to clench or grind your teeth.
- The habit of chewing on anything like pencils or pens or even chewing gum should be avoided.
- Visit a dentist to ascertain the true cause of teeth grinding. As a way to protect your teeth from grinding during sleep, your dentist may recommend a mouth guard.
- Many a times, stress is the reason behind teeth grinding. Adopt proven ways to reduce stress and bring in more relaxation to your lives.
- Exercise regularly to reduce stress. Stress counselling also helps bring relief to teeth grinding.
- Treat the sleep disorder to cure yourself of teeth grinding.
- Some behavioural alterations have also helped in the treatment of bruxism. For instance, practicing sleep hygiene has been known to reduce incidences of teeth grinding.
- Relaxation techniques like meditation, hypnosis, and breathing exercises can help reduce teeth grinding to a great extent. Meditation and breathing exercises help calm the mind and reduce the stresses which can alleviate bruxism to a great extent. May victims suffer from low self-esteem. Relaxation techniques and mediation induce a sense of well-being and control over one’s body.
- Muscle relaxants also help alleviate the problem of teeth grinding.
- Speak to your dentist. Prolonged teeth grinding can damage the enamel. If you have been grinding your teeth for a long time, it is important to discuss it with your dentist so that he can specifically look out for some of the problems in your gums and teeth due to bruxism.
- If bruxism is caused due to problems with the teeth structure like misalignment or broken teeth, your dentist will be in a position to rectify the problem with braces or a crown which can provide relief to the problem.
- It may be heartening to know that in most people with bruxism, it is in a mild form and may not warrant any specific treatment. However, if the clenching or grinding of teeth is severe, then a mouth guard fitted by the dentist can do the trick to protect your teeth from excessive damage.
- In cases where bruxism is triggered by stress, the first and foremost thing is to identify the cause of stress and address them. Calming therapies, jaw-related therapy and exercise can alleviate the problem to a large extent.