Do you grind your teeth while you sleep?
Bruxism, or teeth grinding, is the unconscious clenching of the jaw and grating teeth. Teeth grinding can occur in patients of all ages and Dr. Larsen screens for the common signs of bruxism during routine dental care visits. Teeth grinding is one of the dental concerns Dr. Paul C. Larsen addresses at his dental office in Bountiful, Utah.
Patients are often unaware that they are grinding their teeth at night until they are presented with more noticeable symptoms. While teeth grinding can be caused by certain diseases, alcohol, and tobacco, it is most often due to stress, anxiety, sleep disorders, an abnormal bite, or crooked teeth.
If you have been grinding your teeth, you may notice you wake up with a sore jaw, sensitive or loose teeth, headaches, or unexplained tooth damage. When this happens, schedule an appointment with Dr. Larsen as soon as you can. A highly trained restorative dentist in Bountiful, UT, Dr. Larsen can provide you with a variety of solutions to prevent teeth grinding, restore your smile, and renew your ability to get a good night’s sleep.
Bruxism Treatment in Bountiful, UT
Tooth damage can occur over time if bruxism is left untreated. A Dawson-trained dentist, Dr. Larsen has a variety of conservative treatment options to address the underlying problem and prevent further damage from teeth grinding.
The fit and function of your bite play an important role in the stability of your smile and long-term dental health. Dr. Larsen can offer advanced diagnostics and treatment options for teeth grinding and bite disorders, which often go hand-in-hand.
Here are some commonly asked questions we receive regarding our bruxism treatment options:
My teeth are worn down. What can be done?
Teeth grinding often causes worn down teeth, in addition to chipped, cracked teeth caused by the pressure that teeth grinding places on teeth surfaces. Dentistry solutions like dental crowns, tooth bonding, or porcelain veneers are the perfect solutions to restore your smile when damaged from teeth grinding. A consultation with Dr. Larsen will help you determine which restorative method is best for your needs.
Will a dentist know if I grind my teeth?
A dentist will visually examine your teeth and gums during routine dental exams. They can find signs of bruxism, including tooth wear and damage. If they notice this damage, they will also take X-rays to see if your TMJ is connected to these signs of teeth grinding. Based on this thorough examination, the dentist will recommend a treatment for your bruxism and any additional symptoms.
How is bruxism treated?
Our goal for bruxism treatment is to fix any tooth damage that has occurred and provide you with a customized night guard to prevent further tooth damage in the future. Customized night guards fit snugly over your teeth and hold your jaw in a comfortable resting position.
Even if you are able to grind your teeth together while using this oral appliance, it protects your teeth so no damage is caused. Some of our patients even choose to wear their night guard during high-stress situations to prevent tooth damage.
Are there different types of bruxism?
Bruxism can occur during the day or during sleep. Daytime or diurnal bruxism can occur due to stressors like work or family life. You may only semi-voluntarily notice yourself clenching your teeth.
Nocturnal bruxism occurs when you are asleep. Most patients who grind their teeth at night only notice their symptoms once they wake up. However, patients may have daytime and nighttime bruxism.
Are bruxism and TMJ disorders the same?
No, bruxism can be a symptom of a TMJ disorder, but they are not the same. Bruxism is marked by teeth clenching and grinding. TMJ disorders are bite disorders that affect the joints that connect the jaw bone to the skull. Patients with TMJ disorders can often experience bruxism as a result of this disorder.
Is a nightguard comfortable?
Our nightguards are customized to your smile so that they fit snugly over your teeth. Because they are made specifically for you instead of a one-size-fits-all approach, you should notice extensive comfort compared to a mouthguard you can buy over the counter.
We understand that being comfortable while you sleep is a priority, and our team does everything we can to ensure your night guard will not disturb your slumber.