If you catch yourself grinding your teeth often, then you might worry that you have bruxism. The act of grinding your teeth itself doesn’t necessarily mean that you do; however, doing so constantly means your risks may be higher than usual. At our Conroe, TX, dental office, we can help you determine if you have bruxism, and can offer customized treatment to help you stop grinding your teeth and restore your good oral health.
If you do have bruxism
Bruxism means chronic, unconscious teeth-grinding. Unlike occasionally clenching your teeth together, bruxism causes you to forcefully grind them every day. For many patients, it occurs more often at night. Because they’re asleep, they aren’t aware of it, and cannot force themselves to stop. When it’s left untreated, bruxism can wear down and damage your tooth structure severely, leading to several other conditions, including:
- A misaligned bite
- Increased risks of tooth decay
- Cracked, fractured, or broken teeth
- TMJ disorder (a jaw dysfunction)
- Heightened risks of tooth loss
- And more
What’s causing your bruxism?
Unlike conditions that stem from excessive dental plaque, like tooth decay and gum disease, bruxism can several different, unique potential causes. For example, you might grind your teeth because you’re under an excessive amount of stress, which can cause your jaw muscles to remain constantly tense. Or, you may have an imbalance in your bite (such as crooked teeth) that makes it difficult for your jaw to rest comfortably. This may cause your jaw muscles to spasm, or your jaw to shift constantly and force your teeth against each other.
The way to stop grinding your teeth
If you think you might have bruxism, or if we notice signs of it during your routine exam and cleaning, then we can help you stop grinding your teeth and prevent extensive tooth damage with custom-designed treatment. For example, an oral appliance may be able to protect your teeth from each other when you sleep at night, which is often the most active time for bruxism. You might also benefit from orthodontic treatment to correct your tooth alignment and/or restorative treatment to build up worn down or damaged tooth structure.
Find out if you need bruxism treatment
If you exhibit signs of bruxism, or if you notice yourself grinding your teeth often during the day, then you may need bruxism treatment to protect your smile. For more information, 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.