Bruxism, the technical term for term for teeth grinding, is a condition that afflicts about 10% of adults and more than twice as many children. Because it happens most often while a person sleeps, in many cases people with bruxism have no idea that they grind their teeth. If you suspect or are worried that you may have this condition, Dr. Ivan Stein and Dr. Allan Stein of the Headache & TMJ Center of New Jersey have prepared this blog to help you get a correct diagnosis if you grind your teeth while sleeping.
Look for the Signs
Teeth grinding may happen while you’re unconscious, but you can still look for symptoms of the condition while you are awake. You may have bruxism if:
- Your teeth are sore and/or sensitive
- You discover cracks or chips in your teeth
- Your jaw feels tight or uncomfortable, especially after waking up
- Your jaw clicks when you open your mouth
- Your temples are achy
Visit a Dentist
Unless you share a bed or bedroom with someone who can confirm that you grind your teeth at night, you are going to need a professional diagnosis to know for sure. The aforementioned signs of bruxism can be mistaken for something else or may be too subtle to notice. That’s where the dentists at Headache & TMJ Center of New Jersey can help. At an appointment, our experts will examine your mouth for an indication that the teeth have experienced undue wear and tear. Tiny cracks and chips are another big gauge of the situation.
If our dentists conclude that teeth grinding is occurring, this is a problem that can be treated to alleviate the pain and prevent further damage to the teeth. They can create a customized oral appliance that fits comfortably in your mouth to wear while you sleep. With this device in your mouth, you will be unable to grind your teeth. Furthermore, the dentists can perform restorative and cosmetic procedures (as necessary) to improve teeth that have already been harmed by bruxism.
Speak to the Experts about Bruxism
Continued teeth grinding while sleeping can lead to broken teeth, chronic headaches and temporomandibular disorders like TMJ syndrome. To avoid a life of discomfort, it is important to find out if you have bruxism and to treat it before the condition gets worse. To schedule an appointment with Dr. Stein or Dr. Stein at their office in West Orange, New Jersey, please call 855-TMJ-DOCS at your soonest convenience.