You may be surprised to learn that chronic teeth grinding - clinically known as bruxism - is a problem that affects tens of millions of people of all ages throughout the United States. What may surprise you even more is that teeth grinding can lead to a variety of oral and overall health problems, from enamel erosion and tooth decay to gum disease and TMJ disorder. Fortunately, general dentistry offers a number of solutions to teeth grinding - and why not? After all, who knows your teeth better than your dentist?
Effective teeth grinding treatment is available to patients of the Corpus Christi cosmetic and general dentistry practice of Charles A. Robertson, DDS and N. Perry Orchard, DDS. If you suffer from chronic teeth grinding, our esteemed dentists can thoroughly examine your mouth, jaws, and neck and speak to you about your medical history. Using all of the data they gather, they can provide you with a customized treatment plan that will help to resolve your problem and relieve you of any painful symptoms you are experiencing in connection with your bruxism.
Why do people grind their teeth?
When it comes to treating bruxism, this is the million-dollar question. In general, people can grind their teeth for any number of reasons, the most common being stress. Other causes include misalignment of the teeth, problems with the bite (i.e., malocclusion), sleep disorders (most people with bruxism grind their teeth in their sleep), and even excess alcohol consumption. In some patients, a single cause can be pinpointed; in some, multiple causes are to blame. Sometimes, no definitive cause or causes can be identified.
Whatever the case, identifying the possible cause or causes is essential to prescribing an effective treatment. If no cause can be identified, we will begin with the most conservative approach to treatment and work our way from there.
Treating Teeth Grinding
After one of our dentists has diagnosed the likely cause of your teeth grinding, he will recommend a treatment plan. Your treatment plan may include one or more of the following, depending on the causes and severity of your bruxism:
- Changes to your lifestyle: If stress is the primary cause of your teeth grinding, then changes to your lifestyle may bring about dramatic improvements to your condition. Some people who suffer from chronic bruxism experience good results from relaxation techniques such as meditation. Others learn to control their stress through exercise, time management, and other strategies. If you drink alcohol, a reduction in your intake may help.
- Orthodontic treatment: If you have problems with tooth alignment or your bite, you may benefit from orthodontic treatment. We offer Invisalign® as an alternative to traditional metal braces.
- Mouthguard therapy: A custom-crafted mouthguard can help to protect your teeth at night, when unconscious teeth grinding can cause tremendous damage and interfere with your sleep.
Learn More about Teeth Grinding Treatment
To learn more about teeth grinding treatment and bruxism in general, please contact our cosmetic and restorative dentistry practice today.