Bruxism/teeth grinding?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    May 19, 2011 1:45 AM GMT
    I'm starting to believe I have a problem with grinding my teeth and biting the inside of my cheek. Over the past few days I've noticed some pain in the lower-left part of my jaw in addition to a bit of sensitivity on my molars and irritation on the inside of my cheek. At least those symptoms give me enough reason to suspect I must be grinding my teeth at night, which I can't tell since I live alone.

    I guess that means I'll be off to the dentist some time this week!
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    May 19, 2011 7:41 AM GMT
    don't give head till you heal that mouth!!
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    May 19, 2011 1:40 PM GMT
    Haha, that goes without saying. There is no man in my life right now, and I don't believe there will be anytime soon.
  • JerseyBlues

    Posts: 111

    May 19, 2011 1:49 PM GMT
    You should see your dentist as soon as possible and have a night-guard made to wear while you sleep. I've been grinding my teeth since I was a kid and a few years ago chipped off the tops of three teeth. Since I got the night-guard, I'm still grinding my teeth, but not doing any damage icon_biggrin.gif

    When you're grinding your teeth, you don't hear it, but others do and it's very loud! One night I woke myself up from the noise that sounded just awful.

    Go save your teeth!
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    May 19, 2011 1:51 PM GMT
    I live by myself, so I couldn't have anyone tell me if they hear me grinding my teeth.

    Besides, I think most of the damage I'm doing is to my cheek than to my teeth. I have some impressive bite marks on the inside of my cheek.
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    May 20, 2011 10:32 PM GMT
    Bruxism is a bigger cause of tooth decay than cavities. You will grind the enamel right off your teeth and ruin them all. You definitely need to get a night guard.

    If you can afford it, and are not afraid of needles a small amount of botox can be injected into the TMJ and you won't grind at night but you have to get the shot about every 6 months.
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    May 20, 2011 10:46 PM GMT
    I've been a grinder too and have no idea if I still do it. I've got scars in my cheeks from the bites. Really should start wearing that guard again.
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    May 21, 2011 1:56 AM GMT
    adam228 saidBruxism is a bigger cause of tooth decay than cavities. You will grind the enamel right off your teeth and ruin them all. You definitely need to get a night guard.

    If you can afford it, and are not afraid of needles a small amount of botox can be injected into the TMJ and you won't grind at night but you have to get the shot about every 6 months.


    I'm definitely considering getting a mouthguard. Fortunately I have an appointment with the dentist next Tuesday to talk about it.

    It's hard to notice any effects of the grinding on my teeth at this point. But it's definitely obvious on my cheek. I've chewed it up quite good lately!

    More than anything I'm annoyed this habit started because it was never a problem before. Or perhaps I've been doing it for a while and just finally noticed the signs of it.
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    May 21, 2011 2:18 AM GMT
    Hey dude, Just to clear a few things up here a professionally made occlusal splint (aka night guard) that puts your jaw joint into the neutral position (not just props it open) is a must for you. Also most research and proven success is on splints that cover a full arch, not a partial arch coverage which some dentists prefer in fads. The idea is that you grind your splint to bits rather than your teeth, I'm sure this is pretty obvious.
    There are hard splints, soft splints and laminated hard/soft splints. Many patients find the soft and laminated more comfortable at first but if you ask the ones wearing the hard splints how they find it they almost always say they find it no probs, took a bit of getting use to. The key is that the bite is adjusted correctly when it is issued to you, not just impressions taken, the splint made and issued to you without adjusting the bite.
    Also over time the hard splint is much easier to keep clean and therefore more hygienic.
    Botox injections are quite topical at the moment with very limited indications. It is most definitely not something to try without first trying a splint and secondly consulting a Maxillofacial Surgeon.
    Cheers dude
    PS the habitual side of this condition is almost impossible to change/correct. Unless it was brought on by some acute definable stressful stimulus, then eliminating this may correct it. Learning to minimise the effects of the gridning is therefore the most important key in management
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    May 21, 2011 2:22 AM GMT
    More than anything it might serve me better to identify and deal with whatever stress that is enabling the habit to begin with.
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    May 21, 2011 2:35 AM GMT
    Nico, thanks for posting this topic. I never thought to solicit advice on this here, but it makes sense.

    Anyone have any advice on how to stop grinding/clenching your teeth when you're awake? I'm not joking. I'm aware of it, but can't stop the behavior. It's to the point that some areas of my gums have receded and I've developed ringing in my ears. Would getting a 'night guard' and stopping the sleeping behavior help stop the waking behavior? Any advice is appreciated.
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    May 29, 2011 2:03 PM GMT
    So I finally got a mouth guard a few days ago. I have to admit it's still a bit weird getting accustomed to sleeping with something bulky in my mouth, but I'm optimistic that this should minimize the chewing on my cheek.

    Nevertheless, I'm looking into some ways to de-stress myself so that I can try to eliminate the biting habit altogether. Or at least to have it happen less frequently.
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    May 29, 2011 5:52 PM GMT
    These teeth grinding can be serious because they actually chip off enamel and allows the bacteria for easier access to the dentin. Cavity starts like that.

    WHY ARE YOU STRESSED OUT THOUGH? THAT'S THE MORE IMPORTANT QUESTION.
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    May 29, 2011 6:03 PM GMT
    I'd like to know myself. Who doesn't get stressed about something occasionally?
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    May 29, 2011 6:08 PM GMT
    Just don't let stuff bother you. I never do. Then again I don't ever have to worry about jobs or money so I guess I am the lucky one.
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    May 29, 2011 6:10 PM GMT
    I think a person who doesn't have worries is in denial of having worries or is afraid of facing what really worries them. My brother is a major workaholic so that he never has to think about what bothers him.

    Meanwhile I thrive in my worries because they motivated me to do something, ha. Eventually the worry passes, and all is well for a while.
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    May 29, 2011 6:24 PM GMT
    Anywho, when I visited the dentist last week, she said she's seen a considerable increase of people grinding their teeth lately. She attributes it to the high stress people are feeling from the current economic woes and uncertainties.
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    May 30, 2011 12:18 AM GMT
    I'm not sure I agree there. If you grind your teeth while you are awake then sure it can be attributed to stress but if you grind them unconsciously in your sleep it is true bruxism and a neurological problem, nothing more.
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    May 31, 2011 12:26 AM GMT
    In my case I would attribute it to stress because I never had this biting problem until recently. I can honestly say that my stress levels have increased over the past couple of months, so I suspect that's when the habit began.
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    Jul 11, 2011 3:06 PM GMT
    So I've been experimenting with some things over the past couple of months. I must admit that it took quite a while to get accustomed to sleeping with a mouthguard. The ones that you boil and mold to your teeth are quite bulky. However, I got used to it after a week or so. I already felt less sensitivity and jaw soreness after 3-4 nights. But I could feel that the mouthguard was starting to change my bite.

    Even though the mouthguard is useful towards reducing damage to the death, it does nothing to fix the root of the grinding problem. I've been trying some exercises and massages to relax my jaw just before I go to bed. So far I've already seen some results from doing this. The inside of my cheek is thanking me for those exercises.
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    Aug 06, 2011 1:35 AM GMT
    I grind too ended up chipping 3 teeth and had to get 3 crowns. I now wear A night guard every night.
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    Sep 19, 2011 1:35 AM GMT
    A couple nights ago I accidentally fell asleep without my mouthguard. Needless to say I woke up the next morning with an incredibly sore jaw and sensitive molars. However, I did figure out that I don't grind my teeth. I just bit down very hard (and for hours at a time apparently!). Heh, still not good. I won't forget the mouthguard again!
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    Sep 19, 2011 1:45 AM GMT
    I managed to grind a hole in my gold crown before my dentist implored me to address the problem.

    My daytime problems were definitely caused by my nighttime grinding.


    I have a night guard. But, I got better results with a better pillow that provided neck support.

    http://www.google.com/search?q=tempurpedic+neck+pillow&tbm=shop&aq=f

    For me, the problem is that without neck support, my neck muscles would get exhausted during the night.

    Give it a try.
  • dancedancekj

    Posts: 1761

    Sep 19, 2011 1:48 AM GMT
    balou saidNico, thanks for posting this topic. I never thought to solicit advice on this here, but it makes sense.

    Anyone have any advice on how to stop grinding/clenching your teeth when you're awake? I'm not joking. I'm aware of it, but can't stop the behavior. It's to the point that some areas of my gums have receded and I've developed ringing in my ears. Would getting a 'night guard' and stopping the sleeping behavior help stop the waking behavior? Any advice is appreciated.


    If you're experiencing daytime bruxism, then I think you might be able to modify the habit. I used to brace my tongue against the inside of my upper incisors whenever I was stressed, until I coached myself out of it. I think that I tap my fingers and feet (it's been gone for about three years now).

    Bruxism is apparently exacerbated by stress of course. I think most of the dental students in my class lost about 0.5 mm of height through their four years icon_smile.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 19, 2011 2:52 PM GMT
    pocketnico saidA couple nights ago I accidentally fell asleep without my mouthguard. Needless to say I woke up the next morning with an incredibly sore jaw and sensitive molars. However, I did figure out that I don't grind my teeth. I just bit down very hard (and for hours at a time apparently!). Heh, still not good. I won't forget the mouthguard again!


    I bite down too, even during the day, and with my teeth clenched I simultaneously suck my cheeks in and all of the saliva out of my mouth. Only realized I was even doing it a couple months ago.