Making sure your smile stays healthy doesn’t often require much. For the most part, being sure to consistently brush and floss your teeth every day can help you largely prevent the plaque and tartar buildup that leads to conditions like tooth decay, gum disease, and more. However, not every part of your oral health is always in your full control, and not every problem that could threaten is as easily preventable as tooth decay and gum disease. Today, we take a look at two conditions that can affect your bite’s function – bruxism and TMJ disorder – and why addressing them may be just as important to your oral health as sticking to good hygiene principles.
Bruxism and constant teeth-grinding
When you can’t control it or even realize how often it occurs, your teeth-grinding habit may be a condition known as bruxism. Unlike a less serious teeth-grinding habit, which might cause you to grind your teeth every once in a while, bruxism means that you grind your teeth consistently every day and/or night. This can result from a number of different potential factors, such as a bite imbalance or dysfunction in your jaw joints. Despite having different originating factors, however, bruxism will always lead to more serious oral health trouble if not addressed.
TMJ disorder and bite alignment
Your teeth constantly grinding together can be one indication that something isn’t right with your bite function. Another is the manifestation of damage, misalignment, inflammation, or other forms of dysfunction in one or both of your jaw’s joints. Known as temporomandibular joints, or TMJs, the two joints located on both sides of your jaw are responsible for your bite’s movement. When healthy, they move together when your bite opens, closes, and functions. TMJ disorder can describe different types of damage to one or both of these joints, and the range of discomforts that it can cause may vary greatly. Yet, in addition to chronic headaches, earaches, face and jaw pain, one of the signature impacts of TMJ disorder is a diminished ability of your bite to function properly throughout the day.
Improving your bite’s ability to function
When bruxism, TMJ disorder, or other concerns impact your bite function, it can have several distinct consequences for your oral health and quality of life. Biting and chewing your food are a significant part of your everyday life, and in addition to making this more difficult, conditions like bruxism and TMJ disorder can also lead to increased risks of developing more serious oral health concerns later. The most effective way to prevent this is to address your bite dysfunction as soon as possible with appropriate, custom-designed bruxism or TMJ treatment.
Learn if you need bruxism or TMJ treatment
If you suffer from bruxism and/or TMJ disorder, then addressing your condition as soon as possible could be essential to maintaining your bite’s proper function. To learn more, schedule a consultation by calling the Dental Centre of Conroe in Conroe, TX, today at (936) 441-4600. We serve patients from Conroe and all neighboring communities.