Teeth grinding is a common complaint and a habit that can cause significant dental and health problems. The team at Pittsburgh Dental Sleep Medicine, serving the communities of Latrobe, McMurray, Monroeville, and Wexford, Pennsylvania, can help get to the bottom of your teeth grinding and find relief. The process begins with an initial appointment at the McMurray office, which you can book online or by phone today.
Bruxism is the medical term used to describe grinding, clenching, or gnashing your teeth. Some people perform these habits during their waking hours, but bruxism most often occurs while you’re asleep.
Many men and women live with bruxism, but some have no idea they are experiencing the condition. Like snoring or sleep apnea, your sleep partner or family members may have a better idea of your nighttime habits than you do.
In addition to reports of teeth grinding, symptoms of bruxism include:
If you notice several of these symptoms, schedule a diagnostic exam to determine if bruxism is to blame.
Nighttime teeth grinding is more than an annoyance; it’s also a serious health and dental concern. Left untreated, you can eventually cause significant damage to your teeth, gums, and temporomandibular joint.
If you wear away your tooth enamel, your teeth are at risk of developing cavities. Grinding or clenching can also change the alignment of your bite, placing undue pressure on surrounding teeth and the underlying bone. Damage to your jaw can lead to long-term pain as well as difficulties with speech and eating habits.
One of the most frustrating aspects of teeth grinding is the fact that it occurs while you’re asleep. That leaves you with little control over the habit.
Oral appliances called clenching splints are a great way to prevent teeth grinding. Pittsburgh Dental Sleep Medicine creates these devices to achieve a custom fit, and you wear them over the surface of your upper or lower teeth like a retainer or sports mouth guard.
The material of the oral appliance protects your teeth from the effects of grinding. The device also helps hold your jaw in proper positioning as you sleep, preventing you from placing excess pressure on your teeth or jaws.
When you’re ready to explore treatments to put an end to bruxism, schedule your appointment with the McMurray office of Pittsburgh Dental Sleep Medicine. Online booking is available, or you can always call the office to speak with a member of the administrative staff.