1. Causes and Treatment for Teeth Grinding

    17th October 2016 by thecourtyardclinic
    smile teeth

    sleeping man

    A misaligned jaw could be a cause of teeth grinding. Other notable causes of bruxism are stress and anxiety that build up tension in the jaw.

    Key takeaways:

    • You will know that you have bruxism if you wake up with tense jaw or a dull headache in the morning.
    • Constant teeth grinding will prove to be a major problem for the teeth. Worn out tooth enamel will lead to sensitivity and even chipped teeth.
    • Teeth grinding can be managed by reducing stress, avoiding alcohol and caffeine, and getting a mouth guard to protect the teeth.

    TMJ is not necessarily a cause of grinding, though. “People who have chronic TMJ pain are more likely to grind their teeth,” says Dr. Wadhwa. “However, it’s a chicken and egg argument. We don’t know if TMJ pain causes one to grind their teeth or vice versa.”

    Read the full story here


  2. Ways to Prevent Grinding Your Teeth

    7th September 2016 by thecourtyardclinic
    Woman put mouth guard on teeth

    mouth guard on teeth

    Coffee and alcohol may trigger or worsen teeth grinding (also known as bruxism) — especially when consumed closed to the evening.

    Key takeaways:

    • Teeth grinding often occurs at night making it difficult for people to know if they are grinding.
    • Stress is a major cause of bruxism. Exercise helps to alleviate stress and prevent teeth grinding.
    • Wearing a custom-made mouth guard from the dentist will help prevent damage caused by grinding or clenching.

    Your dentist can also look for symptoms, like changes or abnormalities in your teeth as well as jaw tenderness. Severe bruxism can lead to loose or broken teeth, and can wear them down so much that crowns, implants, root canals, bridges, or dentures may be needed.

    Read the full story here


  3. Why You Grind Your Teeth at Night—and How to Stop

    25th August 2016 by thecourtyardclinic

    Yong man sleeping in his bed on white pillow

    Feeling stressed can affect the mouth since people tend to hold tension in the jaw and the neck. Recurring and continued anxiety may cause teeth grinding when people sleep. 10 to 20 percent of adults often deal with teeth grinding at one point in their lives.

    Some of the signs to look out for are waking up with a dull headache, tension in the jaw, and worn out teeth. Teeth grinding also referred to as bruxism can also be caused by certain medications.

    Work towards reducing stress to prevent tooth grinding as well as cutting back on the consumption of caffeine and alcohol.

    Read the full story here


  4. Treatment available for people who grind their teeth

    6th May 2014 by thecourtyardclinic

    There are many different treatment options for people who grind their teeth, the symptoms can range from mild jaw pain up to severe chronic headaches.

    Anti-inflammatories can help with pain, while anti-anxiety drugs such as diazepam are effective muscle relaxants.
    Osteopaths, chiropractors and psychologists all use strategies to reduce tension in the head and neck area, as well as addressing underlying mental stress.

    The Bruxism Association recommends hypnotherapy, and some studies support its use. In 1991, a report in the American Journal of Clinical Hypnotherapy found it could reduce grinding noticeably, with results lasting for up to 36 months.
    According to some experts injecting Botox (botulinum toxin) into the masseter muscles of the jaw is also worth trying.

    The grinding itself can be prevented through use of a plastic device (called an occlusal splint), worn at night to protect teeth. If unconscious tooth-grinding occurs during the day, teaching the patient to be aware of it can break the cycle.

    Here at The Courtyard Clinic our dental experts are trained in establishing the cause of your tooth grinding and in the provision of treatment to cure it and protect your precious teeth.

    To find out more call Alison on 01932 582949

  5. Are you grinding your teeth??

    28th March 2014 by thecourtyardclinic

    Here at The Courtyard Clinic we see a lot of patients who have signs of tooth grinding (known to dentists as bruxism), this can be a debilatating disorder leading to the breakdown of the teeth as well as other symptoms around the body. Patients often do not realise they grind their teeth but may recognise many of the symptoms listed below.

    Symptoms Of Bruxism

    Physical symptoms: headache, temporomandibular joint (jaw pain) discomfort and muscle aches, facial myalgia (muscle pain of the face), ear ache, stiffness of the shoulders, limited mouth opening and sleep disruption of the individual as well as the bed partner.

    Causes Of Bruxism

    Why bruxism occurs is not always clear. However the majority of current evidence points to 3 main factors in the cause for bruxism:

    1) Sleep Disorders

    It is known that bruxism rarely occurs alone. Research has consistently found that bruxism is found more frequently in those individuals who have an existing sleep disorder such as snoring, breathing pauses during sleep and Sleep Apnoea

    2) Lifestyle Factors

    Lifestyle factors such as age, smoking, caffeine intake and heavy alcohol consumption are associated co-factors of bruxism. The use of psychoactive substances (alcohol, tobacco,  caffeine, or medications for sleep, depression, and anxiety) increases arousal and leads to problems sleeping. Bruxism is significantly higher in individuals whose lifestyle includes the use of these psychoactive substances.

    3) Stress, Anxiety

    Anxiety, stress and adverse psychosocial factors are significantly related to tooth grinding during sleep and it has been found that nearly 70% of bruxism occurs as a result of stress or anxiety. It is well documented that job related stress is harmful to good sleep and as a consequence can be responsible for daytime sleepiness. But, it is also the most significant factor associated with bruxism.


    Effects Of Bruxism

    Short-term effects of bruxism
    • Headache – Bruxism sufferers are three times more likely to suffer from headaches.
    • Facial myalgia (aching jaw & facial muscles)
    • Tightness/stiffness of the shoulders
    • Ear ache
    • Limitation of mouth opening
    • Sleep disruption of bed partner due to noise
    • Sleep disruption
    • Excess tooth mobility
    • Inflamed & receding gums
    Long-term effects of bruxism
    • Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (sometimes called TMJD or just TMJ)
    • Tooth wear & breakage

    How Can I Stop Grinding My Teeth?

    Although there have been many treatments proposed over the years to decrease the level of bruxism, the only proven treatments for bruxism are mandibular advancement devices, hypnosis and occlusal splints.

    Occlusal splints are small plastic mouth-guards that can be used immediately without specialist fitting.

    Occlusal splints have been found to be the most successful as they protect the teeth from premature wear, reduce jaw muscle activity and the noise of tooth grinding. This means that the teeth are protected and their bed partner will not be disturbed by the noise.

    Occlusal Management (fit of the teeth as the two jaws meet)

    There are two categories of occlusal management strategies: ‘true’ occlusal interventions and occlusal appliances.

    Occlusal interventions usually involve occlusal equilibrium, rehabilitation and dental treatment. The treatment is aimed at achieving a ‘harmonious’ relationship between biting surfaces of the teeth.

    The most common and effective treatment involves protecting the teeth with occlusal splints. These splints have different names but in essence, they are all designed to prevent inadvertent tooth movement.

    The occlusal splint is the treatment of choice as it reduces grinding noise and protects the teeth from premature wear without substantial adverse effects. Occlusal splints reduce muscle activity associated with sleep bruxism but it must be acknowledged that these devices, like MADs (See Below) for snoring and sleep apnoea, are only a control and will not cure the condition.

    MADs (Mandibular Advancement Devices)

    MADs are generally used for the management of snoring and sleep apnoea but researchers have investigated their use for the management of sleep bruxism. Many studies report highly effective outcomes in the reduction of sleep bruxism

    Behavioural Approaches

    Psychoanalysis, autosuggestion, hypnosis, progressive relaxation, meditation, selfmonitoring, sleep hygiene and habit reversal/habit retaining have been prescribed for the management of bruxism in specific instances.

    If you feel that you have been grinding/clenching your teeth or your partner has warned you about grinding your teeth at night then please give us a call on 01932 582949 to speak to one of our bruxism experts or book an appointment to come for a check up.

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