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Break The Bruxism Habit Today

Dr Martin Abelar - June 15, 2017 - 0 comments

In the dental world, teeth grinding is actually called bruxism. It affects around 30 million Americans, and the number is growing. The numbers are actually probably higher since many people aren’t even aware they’re doing it. This is because some people only grind their teeth during sleep.

There’s no one specific cause of bruxism, but for many, the likely culprits are stress and anxiety. It can also be caused by a misalignment of the jaw or by certain medications.

Since many patients aren’t aware they’re grinding their teeth, here are some symptoms to watch for:

Waking up with a headache or sore jaw and face
Difficulty opening the mouth all the way, especially in the morning
Damaged, broke or worn down teeth
Pain in the ears and jaw joint that is located just in front of the ears

Since bruxism can be caused by several factors, treatment is different for everyone. If it’s just a habit you’re having a hard time breaking, or it’s stress related, try these tips.

Exercise Regularly 

Whether you enjoy walking, running, biking or hiking just getting your body moving is a great way to clear your mind and reduce stress and anxiety.

Be Aware

If you catch yourself grinding your teeth during the day, start consciously attempting to relax your face and jaw at regular intervals throughout the day. Then when an episode of bruxism strikes you can implement what you’ve practiced and relax.

Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine

Both alcohol and caffeine are stimulants. They can make you tense and anxious which encourages the clenching and grinding of the jaw and teeth. Instead, stay hydrated with lots of water.

If you think your teeth grinding and clenching could be due to a misaligned bite or jaw, or you believe you may just be doing it at night, a custom-made night guard could help. Call our office today at 858-866-9692 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Abelar.

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