It occurs when the upper teeth are clenched with the lower teeth and move back and forth and vice versa. It can occur both during the day and at night, although most patients do so while they sleep, so they are not usually aware of it. It usually appears at an early age, usually in adolescence, and affects men and women equally. Bruxism can cause us various problems such as tooth wear, muscle pain in the mandibular area and even headaches.
What can cause bruxism?
Stress and anxiety: they are the most common causes.
Mouth disorders: a bite that does not fit correctly, the lack of a tooth or its breakage, etc.
Sleep disorders that can cause tension in the jaw; night terrors, sleep apnea
Respiratory or digestive disorders
I regularly consume caffeine, alcohol and tobacco.
What are the most common symptoms?
Wear and fracture of the teeth due to the continuous pressure they receive
Tooth and jaw pain
Irradiation of pain. The discomfort can spread to other organs causing headache, neck and even ears.
Problems in the temporomandibular joint
Dental sensitivity to cold, heat and sweet foods
How can I solve that?
First, go to the dentist. Treatments for bruxism are aimed at reducing teeth grinding, preventing enamel wear, eliminating pain and avoiding possible permanent damage to the jaw. To cure bruxism it is essential to address the cause that causes it and by tackling the cause that produces it we can make this problem disappear.
It is advisable to perform any type of activity that helps control, reduce or eliminate stress and muscle tension, perform relaxation exercises, massage the affected mandibular muscle areas and sleep the appropriate hours maintaining proper body posture.
To avoid wear and erosion of the teeth we can use a splint, always under the supervision of your doctor. It is a prosthesis adapted to the denture of each patient, which will be placed during the hours of sleep, and whose function is to relax the temporomandibular joint to prevent grinding of the teeth and the consequent wear of the enamel, in addition it will disappear the noise when grinding and we will reduce the pain in the area.
For pain and inflammation we can request an analgesic or anti-inflammatory at the pharmacy office. In some cases, the doctor may prescribe a muscle relaxant to take before bed for a short period of time.
Other treatments include tooth carving, orthodontics and replacement of missing or damaged dental crowns.