Nothing is worse than a restless night of sleep, as it can have a significant impact on your daily function and routine. What’s more, the source of your restless slumber could be related to a dangerous sleeping disorder or nighttime teeth-grinding. Without proper treatment or assessment, your health can become at risk down the line. In today’s blog, your Houston, TX dentist will take a look at a phenomenon known as bruxism and how it can impact your oral health.
Understanding the Causes
Have you ever woken up with a sore or tense jaw? What about the inability to open your mouth wide? If you answered yes to either of these questions, chances are, you might be impacted by bruxism. Bruxism – also known as chronic teeth-grinding – occurs when an individual tightly clenches their teeth together and moves the lower mandible from side-to-side. This process not only generate friction between your oral structures, but causes them to become worn down as well.
Chronic teeth-grinding can result from a variety of causes. For example, heightened levels of anxiety or stress can influence grinding. Another major cause might include the body’s attempt to regulate your airflow. After all, research has indicated that bruxism can result from our body reacting to help us maintain consistent breathing throughout the night. You see, it helps to tighten the back throat muscles that may have become relaxed as you slumbered, a phenomenon that occurs when an individual is affected by obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). If you suspect you may be affected by this sleeping disorder, please do not hesitate to reach out to our team today.
The Impact of Grinding Teeth
Not only does bruxism result in worn teeth, but it can cause other complications as well. For instance, your oral structures become at a higher risk of infection, cracking, chipping, and breaking due to consistent wear. Additionally, the tension you experience can result in pain and difficulty performing tasks such as biting or chewing.
Another major concern that can develop from consistent grinding includes the development of a jaw dysfunction known as TMJ disorder. This happens when the lower mandible becomes misaligned with the two temporomandibular joints at which it hinges to the cranium. Contact our team to learn more about the dangers of TMJ disorder.
How an Appliance can Help
Bruxism can be a nuisance in more ways than one, and failing to seek treatment could result in some life-altering events. To best handle your situation, our team may recommend the use of an oral appliance to help protect your natural teeth while you rest. Indeed, a custom mouthguard can help regulate your breathing and prevent damage to your structures without the added hassle of noisy machines, electricity, discomfort, and more.
Learn More Today
Contact SleepWell Houston in Houston, TX by calling 713-796-9600 to learn more about handling your chronic grinding, or schedule your appointment with our team today.