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Nightguards – Midland, TX

Protecting Teeth Against Stress

Man with healthy smile thanks to protective nightguard

Teeth grinding can be a symptom of a few different conditions. For some, teeth grinding - also called bruxism - is the physical expression of stress. Bruxism can also be the result of a bad bite or teeth that are crooked. Teeth grinding happens as you attempt to adjust your bite to make your teeth fit together properly. Other symptoms of teeth grinding occur as a side effect of sleep apnea. Nightguards from our Midland, TX dentist can help protect your smile.

Why Choose John K. Drisdale D.M.D. for Nightguards?

  • Custom Nightguards to Protect Your Teeth
  • Reduce Headaches Caused by Grinding
  • Dentists Knowledgeable in Joint Disorders

Signs & Symptoms of Bruxism

Man experiencing toothache pain due to bruxism

We all might occasionally grind our teeth. This can occur as a result of stress when teeth are clenched or when grinding happens. But trouble really can begin when teeth grinding and clenching become a habit. In particular, bruxism is a problem when it happens at night. While you sleep, you are likely unaware of this harmful habit. Of course, your sleep partner may be very aware of the annoying sound associated with your bruxism. Other signs and symptoms of teeth grinding include:

  • Headaches
  • Sore jaw muscles and facial pain
  • Unusually worn teeth
  • Earaches, with no sign of infection
  • A stiff neck or sore shoulder muscles in the morning

See if you should be treated for Bruxism – Coming Soon!

Harmful Effects of Teeth Grinding

Woman with toothache due to teeth grinding

As we said, occasional grinding and clenching is a normal flight or fight response to a stressful situation, and likely doesn’t cause any harm to your teeth. Habitual bruxism, on the other hand, can have serious consequences to your smile and your overall oral health. Severe bruxism can lead to teeth that become worn down to stubs which is unattractive and unhealthy. Moreover, teeth can even break or become loose as a result of persistent grinding. In this case, untreated bruxism can eventually require the need for a tooth extraction.

Stop Teeth Grinding with A Nightguard

Man sleeping soundly wearing nightguard for teeth grinding

To put a stop to nighttime teeth grinding and clenching, Dr. Drisdale can prescribe a custom-fitted nightguard. Customized just for you from a molded impression of your teeth, this comfortable oral appliance fits in your mouth and prevents the surfaces of your upper and lower teeth from meeting and grinding together.

Other steps you can take to reduce the inclination to grind your teeth include:

  • Stress-reducing activities, such as meditation and yoga
  • Cutting back on foods and beverages that contain caffeine
  • Limiting alcohol consumption before bedtime

Dangers of Clenching Your Teeth

Woman experiencing jaw pain due to clenching her teeth

Chronic grinding and clenching can do more than just wear down your teeth. It can also severely shorten the lifespan of dental restorations like fillings, crowns, and dentures. These are able to last for decades with the right care, but someone with bruxism may need to replace them every few years because they are being exposed to tremendous pressure. This is annoying and expensive. Plus, the tension in the jaw and face muscles caused by bruxism can easily radiate into the neck, head, and shoulders, leading to constant soreness.

TMJ Disorders

Jaw and skull bone model demonstrating T M J disorders

Frequent teeth grinding and clenching can affect your jaw and lead to a TMJ disorder, a condition that affects the joints that allow you to comfortably open and close your mouth. Symptoms of a TMJ problem include soreness when you move your mouth to eat or speak, constant popping or clicking sounds, jaw stiffness, and ear pain.

Learn More About TMJ Therapy