Ways of Realizing You Clench Your Teeth in Your Sleep
Posted on 8/23/2021 by City Smiles DC
Teeth grinding and jaw clenching can be involuntary habits, which may be a result of stress. Kids and adults alike clench their teeth. Surprisingly, most of the time, people do this in their sleep. Medically called bruxism, this condition can cause deleterious effects on your teeth.
How to Recognize Bruxism
Sometimes we recognize bruxism by the patterns of wear on your teeth. The teeth may appear flattened, fractured, or chipped. We see patients with bruxism completely wear off the enamel on their teeth. This is dangerous as the inner layer of your tooth becomes exposed and damaged. Patients may experience increased sensitivity or discomfort in these teeth. On occasion, we will see an adult patient with loose teeth because of bruxism.
Through a series of questions, we can usually deduce that a patient grinds or clenches their teeth while they sleep. For instance, patients who grind their teeth may suffer from discomfort in their jaw. The pain can be described as a dull ache and most likely be felt upon waking. Tired or tight jaw muscles can be a sign of bruxism.
It is not uncommon to have a headache in your temples first thing in the morning or even have a gritty taste in your mouth if you suffer from bruxism. You may also have damage on the inside of your cheeks if you continually clench your teeth while you sleep. One obvious way that a patient can realize if they clench their teeth is the feedback from their sleep partner. Do you wake up or wake those around you? Do they hear you grind your teeth?
Give us a Call to Schedule Your Next Exam
Make sure to schedule your next cleaning and exam. We can look for signs of bruxism and help you to feel better.
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