The good news about treating bruxism is that, for many patients, it’s relatively simple. The condition, which describes the constant grinding of your teeth (often, at night), may be alleviated by wearing a custom-designed bruxism appliance when you sleep at night. However, the problem with treating bruxism is that many people who suffer from it don’t realize it yet. By the time they do, treating bruxism might also require repairing one or more damaged teeth in order to restore their smiles.
Diagnosing your condition as a bruxism problem
The first step to treating bruxism is to accurately diagnose your teeth-grinding habit as such. Many people grind their teeth on occasion, especially in times of excessive stress, but not enough to be considered bruxism. Other techniques, such as learning to relax, might be the most effective way for them stop. However, when you have bruxism, the action of grinding your teeth together is driven by something much more challenging to overcome. This may be an imbalance in your overall bite alignment, or damage to your jaw joints and muscles.
Putting a stop to your teeth-grinding
Once you know that your teeth-grinding habit actually is a bruxism problem, the next step is determining the extent of the problem so your dentist can help you determine the best treatment. For example, many people who have bruxism experience a night-time version of it, during which they tend to grind their teeth more often and more forcefully when they sleep at night. To help you stop this habit, your dentist might recommend custom-designing a bruxism appliance that protects your upper and lower teeth from grinding together while you sleep.
Dealing with any residual tooth damage
Because of the consistent and uncontrollable nature of bruxism, many people who suffer from it may experience varying levels of tooth damage as a result of it. For example, your teeth might become worn down at their chewing surfaces, or develop fractures or breaks due to the excessive pressure. If this occurs, then it will be important to restore any damaged tooth structure before your dentist can recommend a custom-made bruxism appliance.
Learn how we can treat your bruxism
Though treating bruxism can be similar for some patients, dealing with its consequences can differ greatly, according to how much damage your teeth have sustained. To learn more, schedule your appointment by calling Healthy Smiles in Gary, IN, today at 219-938-2637.