Do you clench your teeth when you feel frustrated? If you do, you may be doing more than hiding your negative emotions from other people. Bruxism, or teeth grinding, can harm your jaw and your teeth with the constant pressure exerted. Whether it is done consciously or unconsciously, grinding your teeth will cause a host of problems if it is not seen and treated by a dentist as soon as possible.
The constant grinding of teeth exposes your jaw to a great deal of force, and in time can cause damage to the jaw joint. Teeth grinders often complain of an aching jaw that results from clenching the teeth together most of the time. The protective enamel of teeth is in danger of being prematurely worn away if you constantly grind your teeth; the force makes the enamel thin over time. Worn teeth are prone to sensitivity, and take on an unattractive, abnormal appearance.
What can be done to stop teeth grinding?
Relaxation exercises are prescribed for those who grind their teeth because of stress. If your teeth grind together because of misalignment, you can opt for an orthodontic treatment to move the teeth into a straighter position. If you grind your teeth unconsciously when you sleep, ask your dentist about a custom-made mouth guard that can fit over your teeth; the mouth guard will prevent your teeth from grinding against one another as you sleep.