Teeth Grinding Treatment at dermalclinic® Edinburgh.
Teeth grinding is a common condition and is medically known as Bruxism – and people who grind their teeth are informally known as ‘bruxers’ or ‘bruxists’.
The condition can also be caused by clenching of the jaw and related jaw actions, and bruxism most commonly occurs during the night when we are asleep. It’s usually, therefore, an involuntary action and is usually caused by anxiety and stress.
Repetitive teeth grinding and jaw clenching can lead to headaches and facial pain. It can also lead to damaged teeth and, of course, disrupted sleep which can exacerbate the feelings of anxiety.
Other effects caused by bruxism include a square jaw due to increased muscle activity, loose teeth, neck and shoulder stiffness, sore and receding gums and a reduced opening of the mouth. These effects can all be temporary and can stop when the bruxism is prevented.
More long term effects can be Temperomandibular Joint Disorder and tooth damage.
A common visible sign of a ‘bruxer’ can be a square jaw giving a more masculine appearance which is undesirable for most women, and can look facially disproportionate for many men.
Teeth Grinding can be treated by using a special mouthguard which is worn during the night. It is designed to prevent the rear teeth from touching and transfers the tooth clench to the front teeth, which our body subconsciously knows not to use, as these are for biting. Because we feel uncomfortable putting extended pressure on our front teeth, the teeth grinding is reduced, and in most cases, prevented.
An alternative treatment which also has a faster effect on reducing the square jaw is botulinum toxin injection treatment to the masseter muscle. This weakens the muscle thereby reducing the ability to provide teeth grinding pressure and also reduces the size of the muscles to a more normal appearance as they are no longer over-exercised.
It is commonly believed that tooth grinders are 3 times more likely to suffer from headaches than the average person.