Teeth grinding might not seem like a serious problem, but if it continues over a period of time it can cause damage and pain to your mouth, and even wear down individual teeth. It’s surprising the number of people who suffer from this problem, technically known as ‘bruxism’ and don’t actually know it. The first time some people know of it is when they visit a clinic like the Alkali Dental Studio in Putney, once tooth loss from excessive grinding becomes apparent.
Teeth grinding at night
For most people with a bruxism problem, the reason they don’t notice it is that they do it while they’re asleep. In this case, inserting a protective mouthguard at night can make all the difference, and having one made properly is really important. At the Alkali Dental Studio, the first step when a case of bruxism is identified is to take an impression of your teeth so that a mould can be made for a night guard.
This bite splint fits comfortably over your teeth, as it is custom made and so shouldn’t cause you too many problems once you have got used to having it in at night.
Who suffers from bruxism?
Quite a few people grind their teeth, to varying degrees. It’s a condition that can be exacerbated as we age, but is also affected by stress and illness. As sufferers often do it regularly, it can lead to the wearing down of the tooth enamel. Mostly this goes unrecognised, unless picked up by a dentist or if it begins to cause pain or discomfort later on in life. If you suffer from headaches or jaw-lock, teeth grinding could be the cause.
How does the mouthguard work?
If you suffer from bruxism then you will need to find a solution that prevents your teeth grinding from causing wear. Generally made from rubber or plastic, a mouthguard provides a thin but protective layer between your teeth and reduces damage. Whilst the mouthguard is a good idea to prevent erosion of the tooth enamel, most sufferers will need to find a more permanent solution to their problem.
This can include exploring ways to reduce stress, for example using cognitive behaviour therapy, to address and change the grinding behaviour. You can try a variety of methods to reduce the amount you grind your teeth at night, or at any other time, from yoga to deep breathing, whilst generally trying to reduce factors such as stress. A lot will depend on what works for you as an individual, and it may take some time to find the right solution.
How long it takes to change your teeth grinding behaviour will, of course, dictate how long you will need to wear the mouthguard. As they are tailor-made for the sufferer, the mouthguards you get from a clinic like the Alkali Dental Studios in Putney are far more comfortable than the ready-made ones you can find online.
If you think you have a problem with bruxism then contact us today for a consultation. Protecting your teeth today can ensure that you won’t suffer from major problems in the future.