According to my wife, I grind my teeth in my sleep. Every now and again she’ll wake up to the most awful rock grinding noise. She’ll try to get me to stop doing it by holding my jaw, poking me and waking me from sleep. It is disturbing her sleep and asking why I am doing this, it really annoys her. I don\’t know why I do thisâ€¦
Typical complaint of a teeth grinder. Snoring and Bruxism are seems to cousins when coming to disturbing others sleep.
The habit of grinding, or clenching the teeth is called bruxism, and many adults and children are affected by this condition. While its exact cause is unknown, most experts believe that burxism can occur as a response to increased psychological stress and it is increasing in these days of global recession, where stress and anxiety is getting worse.
Bruxism involves any type of forceful contact between the teeth, whether silent and clenching, or loud and grating. Many people are not aware that they have this condition because they grind their teeth at night while asleep, although burxism can occur during daytime hours as well.
Nightly grinding can awaken roommates and sleeping partners. Teeth grinding is as common as snoring and very disturbing to bed partners.
Certain sleep disorders are accompanied by bruxism. Drinking alcohol and taking certain medications (for example, antidepressants) may worsen the bruxism. Malocclusion (improper alignment of the teeth) may also play a causative role or may determine the severity of symptoms related to bruxism.
Children may develop bruxism as a response to a cold or other infection-? worms-and are more likely to develop it when their parents are affected.
Patients with nightmare tend to get into bruxism more.
OSA-Obstructive sleep â€“ Many patients with this common sleep disorder had a problem with severe teeth grinding (bruxism)also.
Worms-There is the myth that worm infestation can cause grinding teeth in children, by the toxins or the restlessness of the child.
Clenching the teeth puts pressure on the muscles, tissues, and other structures around your jaw. The symptoms can cause temporomandibular joint problems (TMJ).
Grinding can wear down your teeth.
Grinding can be noisy enough at night to bother sleeping partners.
- Anxiety, stress, tension and depression
- Earache (partly because the structures of the temporomandibular joint are very close to the ear canal, and partly because you can perceive pain in a different location than its source (referred pain)
- Eating disorders and painful jaw
An examination can rule out other disorders that may cause similar jaw pain or ear pain, including-dental disorders, ear disorders such as ear infections and problems with the temporomandibular joint Dysfunction, clicking TM joint .
You may have a history of significant stress and tension.
The goals of treatment are to reduce pain, prevent permanent damage to the teeth, and reduce clenching as much as possible.
Treatment of bruxism involves either behavior modification, such as stress management and relaxation therapy, or mechanical devices such as mouth guards to protect the teeth from the forces of contact. Yoga exercise will help, self relaxation, and self hypnosis can all be tried.
To prevent damage to the teeth, mouth guards or appliances (splints) have been used since the 1930s to treat teeth grinding, clenching, and TMJ disorders. A splint may help protect the teeth from the pressure of clenching.
There are many different types of splints. Some fit over the top teeth, some on the bottom. They may be designed to keep your jaw in a more relaxed position or provide some other function.
In some people, just relaxing and modifying daytime behavior is enough to reduce nighttime bruxism. Methods to directly modify nighttime clenching have not been well studied. They include biofeedback devices, self-hypnosis, and other alternative therapies.
Bruxism is not a dangerous disorder. However, it can cause permanent damage to the teeth and uncomfortable jaw pain, headaches, or ear pain. And like snoring it can be annoying to your bed partner at night.
Stress reduction and anxiety management may reduce bruxism in people prone to the condition. Yoga therapy helps.