Have you discover that your jaw hurts, or aches, and you’re not sure why. With or without knowing it, most people grind their teeth daily, and it usually isn’t an issue. But when it gets to the point where your jaw hurts, you may be grinding even more than you realize; and that can create many issues for your dental health.
Tooth grinding is called bruxism. It can happen when you are stressed or anxious. If you catch yourself doing it, you can try to stop, and address the stressful trigger. But it can also occur while you’re sleeping. If you wake up with a sore jaw, or a constant, dull headache, then bruxism may be the reason.
A visit with our office in Totowa may be needed at this time. A detailed examination can help uncover the reason for your symptoms. Muscle soreness and excessive wear on your teeth are signs that grinding may be a large contributory to your problems.
Addressing bruxism is necessary, and not just to relieve the pain. Chronic teeth grinding can cause your teeth to become loose to the point of losing your teeth! In other instances, you can grind them so much that your teeth are gradually reduced to stumps, meaning that you could need crowns, root canals, implants, bridges, or dentures to address the problem. But that’s not all. Because teeth grinding also affects your jaw, without treatment you may experience problems smiling, chewing, or biting. The appearance of your face can change.
There are solutions to this problem. With a proper diagnosis, a complete treatment plan can be arranged to fulfill your desires and needs. Here are several of the options that may be proposed to you.
- Use a mouth guard: Wearing a mouth guard, as instructed by your dentist, can protect the teeth from further wear and help reduce headaches.
- Physiological Orthotic If the diagnosis confirms that the real issue is a relationship problem between the upper and lower jaws and more precise type of appliance may be needed. We have the proper instrumentation to confirm and treat this type of diagnosis.
- Avoid certain foods: Eating or drinking anything containing caffeine, such as coffee, tea, colas, or chocolate can interfere with a good night’s sleep, and can cause bruxism to intensify. Also, avoid alcohol; although you may think it will help you relax, it can actually increase bruxism when sleeping.
- Continue to visit your dentist: They can monitor your progress and adjust your treatment as needed.
The office of Drs. Martin and Ferraiolo are not here simply to clean your teeth and fill cavities. There are many dental issues that negatively affect other areas of your physical being. Getting effective dental care can improve your overall health, and that’s great for everyone.