The Real Dangers of Teeth Grinding

Las Vegas Teeth GrindingTeeth grinding, also known as bruxism, affects patients in a variety of ways. At Jason L. Downey, DDS Dentistry in Las Vegas, we treat all types of teeth grinding, from mild to serious cases.

Many patients that suffer from bruxism are not even aware that they grind their teeth, causing serious damage in the process. It often occurs at night while patients sleep; this is known as sleep-related bruxism. While bruxism may develop without an obvious cause, it is often exacerbated by stress or anxiety or an uneven or misaligned bite.

Why Is Teeth Grinding Bad?

Patients experiencing bruxism should visit ourLas Vegas cosmetic dentists regardless of how mild or serious the problem is. Patients may be aware of teeth grinding, even sleep-related teeth grinding, from symptoms including:

  • Jaw or tooth soreness
  • Tooth sensitivity
  • Earaches
  • Headaches
  • Insomnia
  • Depression or anxiety

While most of these symptoms are reversed when a patient ceases teeth grinding, it can lead to more permanent problems, including the wearing down or loosening of teeth, and joint problems from increased jaw tension and pressure.

Treating The Cause

At Jason L. Downey, DDS Dentistry, we are practiced in diagnosing and treating teeth grinding, its symptoms, and any damage it may have caused. In many cases, treating the causes of teeth grinding directly will alleviate the condition and no further treatment will be required. These causes include:

  • Stress – Patients who grind their teeth because of stress should explore stress management options, including exercising, increasing sleep, psychological therapy, chiropractic treatment, and other solutions. A general physician and/or psychologist can help with stress treatment and practices.
  • Dental Problems – A misaligned jaw, missing teeth or crooked teeth can cause a patient to grind his or her teeth. Treatment for these is specific to the diagnosis each patient receives. At ourLas Vegas restorative dentistry practice, we offer treatment for misaligned teeth with Invisalign®.
  • Psychotropic Drugs- Antidepressants, antipsychotics, and other psychotropic drugs can increase jaw activity while patients are both awake and asleep. It is important for patients to discuss with their prescribing doctors the possibility of adjusting or evaluating these prescriptions to relieve teeth grinding.
  • Caffeine or Alcohol Consumption- The use of caffeine, alcohol, and other drugs can cause an increase in mouth movement and teeth clenching when patients sleep. Reducing the intake of any of these drugs may reduce teeth grinding.

A combination of several factors can cause a patient’s teeth grinding, also including insomnia, posture, diet, and more. If the treatment of the cause of teeth grinding is ineffective or not an option, our Las Vegas dentists will likely suggest amouth guard orsplint, which can prevent grinding and put the jaw in a more comfortable position so that teeth grinding ceases naturally.

Treating the Damage

If bruxism has caused damage to a patient’s teeth, our Las Vegas cosmetic dentists can help with treatment options, including onlays, crowns, traditional fillings, porcelain veneers, and more. These procedures can help return a patient’s smile to its original beauty and restore teeth to their previous size, shape, and color. It is important that patients commit to treating both the cause and damage left from teeth grinding to prevent the repetition of problems in the future.

For more information on teeth grinding and to schedule an informative consultation with our experienced dentists and staff,contact us today.