You can make lots of lifestyle changes to take good care of your smile, from cutting down on sugary soda to flossing every day. But it’s tough to change a behavior you may not even know about. If you grind your teeth (a habit also called bruxism), it often happens at night while you sleep. So you may not be aware of it. We’re sharing some of the key signs here.
Our dentists will look for evidence of grinding during your dental exams. But if you think it’s happening, call us ASAP at 228-220-2117. The sooner you get treatment, the sooner you can get relief from uncomfortable grinding-related conditions like headaches.
Common signs of teeth grinding include:
- Pain in Your Jaw and Elsewhere – Grinding your teeth puts a lot of pressure on your jaw. This can cause your temporomandibular joints (TMJ) to become painfully inflamed. The pain in your jaw often spreads to areas like your neck and shoulders. You may also suffer from headaches and/or earaches.
- Teeth That Show Signs of Damage – There tends to be visual evidence of grinding. Look for flattened areas or dips on the tops of your teeth. You may also notice unexplained chipping or cracking.
- Noises in the Night – Your bed partner may notice squeaking or grinding sounds while you sleep. They may also be able to visually confirm you are grinding your teeth and/or clenching your jaw.
The good news is, we can prevent damage to your teeth by fitting you for a custom-made mouthguard. The guard not only protects your teeth, it eases the pressure on your jaw so it can heal. This should stop your pain. For faster relief, our dentists can also inject Botox into your jaw muscles. Many of our patients combine their use of a mouthguard with Botox.