Protecting Your Smile From Teeth Grinding

richfield teeth grindingBruxism, also known as chronic teeth grinding, could lead to dental damage and a higher risk of serious oral health complications. In today’s blog, your Richfield, MN, dentist is going to explain how to recognize the warning signs of bruxism, and what we can offer to help you stop!

The Causes of Bruxism

We could start grinding our teeth or clenching them regularly for a number of reasons. Common factors behind the onset of bruxism may include tooth loss, bite imbalance, dental misalignment, injury to the face or jaw, untreated TMJ disorder, and even high levels of stress in our daily life. When we examine your smile, we will look at the wear and friction, and other factors, to assess the cause and extent of your teeth grinding.

Signs of Trouble

There could be a number of different warning signs too. People may report headaches, jaw pain, or aches in the neck and shoulders. Other warning signs may include tooth sensitivity and toothaches, as the pressure from grinding may wear away enamel and damage teeth, exposing sensitive inner tissues and leading to tooth decay and dental infection. The teeth could also begin to look small or uneven. As part of your treatment, we can discuss options to repair the damage and restore your smile, such as the use of cosmetic dental bonding, porcelain veneers, or even a lifelike dental crown.

Treatment Options

For some, we could correct misalignment to stop your bruxism. This involves the use of braces or clear aligners to shift the teeth and improve overall straightness. We could also improve overall bite balance with the placement of dental crowns. However, the most common treatment options is the use of an oral appliance. Basically, we will take detailed images and measurements of your smile, which we use to create an oral appliance that looks like a mouthguard, and fits like one. Worn at night, the device will help reposition the jaw to ease strain on the joints and improve balance. This also helps correct TMJ disorder too! The appliance then provides a sturdy barrier between the upper and lower sets of teeth, which prevents further damage to them if you grind or clench your teeth. If you have any questions about our treatment options, then contact our team today. Remember, you can use your remaining dental insurance benefits before they expire at the end of December!

Your Richfield, MN Dentist’s Office Provides Preventive Care

At our Richfield, MN dentist’s office, our team wants to help you preserve the health and beauty of your smile by addressing common oral health issues. To find out more about our general and preventive treatment options, then please call Cedar West Family Dentistry at (612) 861-7188.