Have you experienced teeth grinding or bruxism? Clenching or grinding your teeth is common—and is often a result of being stressed or anxious.
Teeth grinding mostly happens at night, but those who suffer may also notice clenching their jaw during the day. This condition is painful and can cause severe discomfort if left untreated.
Symptoms of bruxism
Most people who suffer from bruxism are unaware until they experience symptoms of clenching and grinding. However, if you experience any of these symptoms, it’s best to consult with your dentist for treatment as soon as possible.
- A sore jaw or neck pain
- Morning headaches
- Tooth damage
- Tooth pain or sensitivity
Risks associated with teeth grinding
Bruxism can lead to long-term damage to the teeth and jaw—with a risk to develop TMJ disorder. Additional ramifications of teeth grinding can include tooth pain, gum recession, and erosion.
The temporomandibular joint connects the lower jaw with the skull. As a result, issues with your TMJ can provoke chronic jaw pain and induce clicking or popping sounds.
Treatment for clenching or grinding
After you visit your dentist for a diagnosis, you will be presented with a personalized treatment plan.
Treatment options for teeth grinding may include:
- A custom-fitted mouthguard to protect your teeth at night
- Medications may be prescribed to relax your muscles
- Botox® injections are another way to relax muscles and limit excess movement
- Facial exercises can also help reduce overall pain and can help strengthen the jaw
Seek relief for bruxism
If you struggle with grinding or clenching, learning how to manage and minimize your TMJ pain is essential. Dr. Barker and the team at our Wichita family dental office provide personalized, compassionate service to every patient in our care. If you’re searching for a thoughtful dental provider, we invite you to schedule a new patient appointment with us!