Teeth grinding (medically known as bruxism) is a fairly common problem for adults and children. According to the National Sleep Foundation, studies show that approximately 8% of adults experience nocturnal teeth grinding, and a third of children also show signs of the condition. Like sleep apnea, many people with bruxism may not be aware of it until they wake up with pain and tension in the jaw and face.
At the Center for Implant & Esthetic Dentistry in Beverly Hills, California, Dr. Ramin Mahallati and our dental team offer restorative and cosmetic dentistry services for children and adults.
Bruxism can wear down your teeth and damage dental restorations over time. It can also cause headaches and pain and stiffness in your face and jaw. Prolonged teeth grinding and jaw clenching can also increase the risk of TMJ disorders.
Pain, tightness, and stiffness in the jaw, especially when you wake up in the morning, are some of the most common signs of teeth grinding. You may also feel pressure in your teeth when you bite down or chew your food. In some cases, a roommate or partner can actually hear your teeth grinding while you sleep.
Anyone can experience bruxism, but there are some risk factors that contribute including:
Many people grind their teeth or clench their jaw while they sleep without noticing any symptoms, so the only way to really know if you need a nightguard or any dental work is to visit our office for regular checkups and professional cleanings (even when you don’t have symptoms). The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends visiting the dentist every six months for a checkup and cleaning.
Like a sports guard that protects your teeth and the soft tissues in your mouth from impact and damage when you play contact sports or other physical activities, a nightguard is custom-designed to fit your teeth and protect them from the effects of grinding while you sleep.
Dental grade nightguards are custom designed from an impression of your teeth, so they’re manufactured to be as comfortable and gentle so they don’t disrupt your sleep or irritate your gums.
If you suspect that you or your child may be experiencing bruxism, we can help. For more information, contact our office to schedule an appointment with Dr. Mahallati or book an appointment online.