Your grinding issue is hurting your whole body.
Who wakes up with a headache? You do. And it makes sense, because it also feels like your jaw, neck, and head muscles have been clenched all night long. Speaking of clenching, some mornings it feels like your teeth have changed shape from the intensity of your clenching and grinding.
Maybe you’re not even sure you have a problem with grinding your teeth at night, but the thing you are sure about is that you wake up in pain.
Guess what? There are some remedies you can try to treat this. And none of these treatments for teeth grinding are invasive, either.
Symptoms of Teeth Grinding and Clenching
First, it helps to know the signs of bruxism (teeth grinding). Those signs include the following:
- Jaw, face, neck, and head pain.
- Unexplained earaches.
- Stiffness in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).
- Poor sleep.
- Chipped, cracked, or worn-down teeth.
- Feeling like you’re never well rested.
Experiencing any of these symptoms once or twice isn’t something you should be too concerned about. However, if you’re experiencing any or all of these symptoms regularly, it’s time to do something before bruxism causes bigger issues.
Get your fillings checked.
Sometimes a filling can be just a little bit too tall to allow your teeth to come together comfortably in your sleep. If you’ve gotten a filling recently, you might need to have it checked.
Yes, your bite is checked at the time the filling is placed, but that isn’t always the end of the story with ensuring your filling fits your mouth. Your mouth is numb when a filling is placed, and that numbness can mean that you don’t bite down like you would normally. So see your dentist and have it checked.
See your dentist for a custom-fitted mouth guard.
Have you tried a nightguard already? If you have, don’t discount this option. There’s a big difference between something you buy online or from a regular retailer and a custom-made nightguard. How much of a difference does that really make? Think about pros and cons of each, and you can imagine the answer.
Our nightguards are made from material designed to stand up to the worst punishment from your teeth. A mouth guard you order online is generally meant to protect your teeth, lips, and gums from external trauma—like a ground ball that takes an unexpected hop.
Nightguards that are custom made for you are fitted to the exact shape and size of your mouth. Standard mouth guards are made to average measurements to suit a wide variety of mouths.
Our nightguards come with Dr. Lang’s years of expertise in solving issues such as tooth grinding and clenching. Generic mouth guards come with a return label at best.
Which one do you think will have the best chance of success?
Telling someone to relax is like telling someone to calm down, in that it usually has the opposite effect. Relaxing is often something that takes more work than it gives in reward. Trying to figure out what has you stressed and then developing a strategy for reducing that stress and plotting a way to prevent it in the future and—You get the picture. Relaxing can be hard work!
But stress and its accumulative effect on the brain, body, and spirit can trigger or exacerbate teeth clenching and grinding (bruxism). So finding ways to relax—especially before going to sleep at night—can have a big impact on your teeth grinding issues.
Make relaxing easy by sticking to classics like taking a bubble bath, breathing exercises, meditation, prayer, soothing music, and journaling. Pick what works for you, and stick with it. Try to incorporate at least one relaxing activity into your nightly routine.
Something good, that is! Did you know the sense of smell is closely linked with our emotion centers in our brains?
It makes sense, though, if you think about it. Have you ever smelled something that reminded you of your childhood? Or of someone in particular? We assign emotional values to scents; or perhaps you could argue that scents evoke emotional values from within us based on how we’re feeling at the moment we first encounter a smell.
The bottom line is: the sense of smell is routed differently in our brain than our other senses. So smelling something that you associate with calmness, relaxation, security, or happiness may be just what your brain needs to help you feel that emotion, too. The sense of smell can be a powerful tool in relaxation. Equally, it can be a mighty trigger for negative emotions as well.
So choose what you smell wisely! Surround yourself with smells that evoke happy or relaxing memories and emotions for you.
To be clear, we mean something like a shot put, a tire, or a kettlebell. Throw something around to exercise your feelings out. It grants you a powerful physical release that can’t be replicated any other way.
Moving your body also gives you the opportunity to engage a different part of your mind than you probably do at work. It exercises your mind and body, and repetitive motion gives you brain space to process things that maybe you haven’t had the time to. Like how you felt when you learned you will be getting that promotion and that raise. Or how you wish you could have a redo on responding more kindly when your child threw their plate on the floor at dinner last night.
As an extra bonus, exercise releases neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters result in more happy hormones floating around within us. Who couldn’t use a boost in that department?
If you’re not sure what’s going on but you’re suffering from nighttime clenching or grinding, we can help.
If you have dental work such as crowns, veneers, and fillings, don’t wait until there’s a serious problem to come visit us. We’ll take you through the options for treatment after a thorough evaluation. We’ll see you soon.