Teeth Grinding and Night Guards
Teeth grinding (bruxism) is very common, and most everyone finds themselves clenching and grinding their teeth from time to time. Stress and tension are the most common causes of teeth grinding, but for some people, teeth grinding is a chronic problem. Over time, the excess stress on your jaw can lead to head and neck pain, as well as abnormal wearing of the teeth.
Customized Night Guards Offer Rapid Relief
Teeth grinding most often occurs during sleep, so you may not even be aware that it’s happening. However, if you wake up with chronic headaches or unexplained shoulder pain, you may be grinding your teeth. These symptoms can become so severe that they actually impact your quality of life.
Over the years, Dr. Kim has helped many patients overcome the painful symptoms of teeth grinding. We create a custom-made device referred to as a night guard (or occlusal splint) that offers quick relief from the painful symptoms of grinding.
The appliance is designed to prevent your upper and lower jaw from coming into contact with each other. This makes teeth grinding virtually impossible, eliminating chronic discomfort and restoring normal movement to your jaw.
Reasons for Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding can be the result of muscle tension or a dysfunction of your temporomandibular joint, the joint that allows your upper and lower jaw to move and come together.
Often, grinding and clenching are caused by a misaligned dental bite. When your bite is out of alignment, excess force is placed on one side of your mouth. This causes you to grind your teeth, creating constant, unnatural force on the jaw joint, and resulting in head and neck pain.
The Problem With Teeth Grinding
These painful symptoms are bad enough, but the constant force placed on your teeth can also lead to other serious dental problems, including:
- Excessive, uneven wear on teeth
- Fractured or chipped teeth
- Loose teeth
- TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder)
Addressing teeth grinding with a night guard is an easy and affordable way to prevent these problems from occurring. Left untreated, more complex solutions, like dental crowns, may be necessary.
Personalized Patient Care
Before deciding if a night guard is right for you, Dr. Kim will sit down and talk to you to learn more about your symptoms. Next, he will examine your teeth to find the reason for your teeth grinding.
We provide personalized care and will take every step necessary to find the solution that protects your oral health and relieves the painful symptoms of teeth grinding. If we determine that your problem cannot be corrected with a night guard, we will be happy to refer you to a specialist for further evaluation.
There really is no reason for you to spend another day living with the symptoms of teeth grinding. If you suspect that your headaches or neck pain are related to grinding, please give us a call so we can arrange a convenient consultation with Dr. Kim.