What is Bruxism?
Bruxism is a common medical condition that affects the teeth and jaw. The main characteristics of bruxism are grinding of the teeth or clenching of the jaw. These actions commonly occur during a person's sleeping hours, but may also occur during the day, mainly due to stress or anxiety. Even when bruxism occurs during the day it is an automatic response that often goes unnoticed by the individual until the symptoms of pain and stiffness set in.
Fortunately, there are many methods of bruxism treatment that have been developed to help patients stop grinding their teeth. If this is something you’re interested in, please contact the Berkeley Clinic to find out more about the types of bruxism treatment offered at our practice in Glasgow.
Bruxism treatment at the Berkeley Clinic
Here, at the Berkeley Clinic, we provide comprehensive diagnostic investigation which enables us to accurately diagnosis bruxism. We can carefully examine how your teeth bite together and analyse the condition of your jaw joint and occlusion.
As the condition is multifactorial, there is no single method to treat bruxism and stop tooth grinding. However, various medicinal treatments such as anti-wrinkle injections, muscle relaxants, anxiety medication and other helpful devices and tools have been proven to be highly effective in treating bruxism.
Splint Therapy and mouthguards for teeth grinding are other effective measures that can help control or stop bruxism from occurring, particularly during sleeping hours.
Sleep Issues with Bruxism
Bruxism is a commonly known sleep disorder, the symptoms of which are earaches, headaches, muscle pain and tooth discomfort. One way to address bruxism is to look at related sleep disorders such as sleep apnoea (aka sleep apnea). However, it can be challenging to know if you're grinding your teeth while sleeping, which can make it much harder to spot and then treat. Moreover, someone sleeping isn't aware of their bite strength so they may tightly clench and grind their teeth.
By visiting the Berkeley Clinic, our team can perform in-depth tests to check if bruxism is indeed occurring during sleeping hours and measure what impact it is having on the health of your teeth and jaw. Once properly diagnosed, we can then get to work providing the most suitable bruxism treatment for your circumstances.
How to stop teeth grinding
If you suspect you suffer from bruxism, you should start listing your symptoms before bringing them to your dentist's attention at your next dental check-up.
This will help give your dentist a clearer idea of your condition, allowing them to perform a full exam to confirm bruxism symptoms and establish how they have occurred. The condition can pose serious problems for your jaw and teeth so it's important to flag this sooner rather than later, even if you are not 100% that bruxism is the cause.
Dental approaches to bruxism
Your dentist may wish to prescribe a (mouthguard) to help relieve any damage that has already occurred to the surfaces of your teeth. Alternatively, they may suggest teeth straightening treatment to quickly correct any problems related to tooth alignment.
- Mouthguards: An acrylic mouthguard, designed from tooth impressions of your top and bottom teeth, will help minimise the abrasive action to tooth surfaces during sleep. These mouthguards should be worn on a long-term basis to help to stabilise the occlusion as well as prevent damage to teeth and the temporomandibular joint.
- NTI-tss device: This type of device is fitted by a health professional and covers the front teeth. The goal of the NTI-tss is to prevent the grinding of the rear molars by limiting the contraction of the temporalis muscle.
Medications for Bruxism
- Muscle relaxants. Your dentist may suggest a muscle relaxant before bedtime for a short time.
- Anxiety or stress medication. You may be recommended the short-term use of antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications. This will help you to deal with stress or other emotional issues that may be causing your bruxism.
- Anti-wrinkle solution. Injected into the masseters reduces the signals between the muscles and nerves. The result is less active jaw muscles.
Self-help for teeth grinding
Some alternative methods for treating bruxism include relaxation exercises, stress management and education. We'd be happy to discuss stress reduction methods as another option if you haven't undertaken them before.
Hypnosis for Bruxism
Stop teeth grinding with hypnosis. Dr Mike Gow is a leading hypnotherapist with extensive experience and expertise in treating teeth grinding and bruxism.
He is a highly trained dental hypnotherapist with a particular interest in dental anxiety management. With his particular set of skills, Mike can help patients control and manage their teeth grinding problems with a combination of alternative techniques.
To enquire further about hypnosis for bruxism or any other type of bruxism treatment, don’t hesitate to contact our Glasgow practice today on 0141 564 1900.
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