Bruxism, or teeth grinding, is a medical term for grinding of the teeth or clenching of the jaw.
Some people can grind their teeth from time to time, but bruxism is a persistent problem which can cause serious discomfort. Persisten bruxism can also lead to headaches and earaches.
Most cases of bruxism can be associated with anxiety or other stress related factors – many of which occur during sleep.
Although bruxism is most common during sleep, it can also affect people who are awake. That being said, it is predominantly associated with sleep disorders and occurs subconsciously. The condition can worsen during times of high stress.
While bruxism, or teeth clenching, is normally associated with perioids of high stress, it can also be related to a number of serious sleep conditions – like obstructive sleep apnoea. This condition, also known as OSA, is a disorder where your breathing is obstructed during sleep.
While bruxism is associated with OSA, the links and reasons for which have still not been fully understood. Some antidepressant medications have also been said to cause an increase in bruxism amongst patients.
Other causes of bruxism could also be related to recreational drugs and smoking tobacco.
What are the symptoms of bruxism?
Teeth grinding, or bruxism, has a wide range of associated symptoms. Many of these can also be assoicated with a number of other conditions – so it’s imporant that you get properly diagnosed by a doctor.
Headaches and earaches, whilst associated with a number of other conditions, are often a result of bruxism. Other teeth-specific conditions include fractured fillings, and a difficulty opening your mouth.
If any of these symptoms persist you should visit a doctor.
How can bruxism be treated?
There a number of possible treatments for bruxism. Some have been shown to be more effective than others.
One of the most popular treatments for bruxism is the use of mouth guards and splints. There are also a number of relaxation-techniques along with sleep-hygeine routines, which are said to be effective.
About the author
Peter knows how difficult it can be to find the right solution to your Bruxism. If you would like to know more, he recommends checking out a review of the best night guards for teeth grinding.