Stop Teeth Grinding in Sleep

by Samantha on June 11, 2010

If you are one of the many people who suffer from Bruxism, the term used to describe the condition of grinding one’s teeth at night, then undoubtedly those within earshot of you during sleeping hours are not getting a good night’s rest. You may not even know that you are keeping them up at night, as most people who grind their teeth at night have no idea they are even doing it.

Grinding your teeth typically takes place at night when one is asleep. However, some people also grind their teeth during the waking hours in the day. Even children can be found to grind their teeth. In fact, it is quite common for children to experience Bruxism, both during the day and while they sleep.

Bruxism is more than just an annoying habit that keeps bedmates awake at night. This behavior may cause teeth problems, headaches and jaw pain. In those people who suffer from extreme Bruxism, jaw problems may also arise. As such, it is a good idea to find a way to stop your nightly teeth grinding habit.

In order to cure your nighttime teeth grinding habit, you must first get to the root of the problem. Unfortunately, experts have been unable to diagnose the exact causes of Bruxism. However, there have been various potential causes associated with this behavior.

The most common potential cause of teeth grinding is stress and anxiety in one’s daily life. Bruxism has also been associated with certain personality types. Specifically, Bruxism is most often seen in people with aggressive and/or hyperactive personalities, in addition to people who seem to experience a lot of frustration and who tend to suppress their emotions, especially anger.

In addition, there are also potential physical reasons for Bruxism to manifest itself. People with certain bite problems or misaligned teeth have often been found to grind their teeth at night. Grinding your teeth at night can also be a side effect to certain medications. In children, the physical aspect of growing teeth and jaws can cause them to grind their teeth while they sleep.

Now that we know of the potential causes of Bruxism, you can find the appropriate solution. For those who grind their teeth due to high stress in their everyday lives, adopting techniques to reduce stress and find ways to relax each day may help curb the nighttime teeth grinding. There are many ways to manage stress, such as through meditation, warm baths, special breathing techniques, and exercise such as yoga. For those that need more physical exertion to relieve stress, perhaps martial arts, a spinning class or a daily run may help.

Others may benefit from psychotherapy, biofeedback, or hypnosis to reduce or eliminate their daily stress, and thus, put an end to their teeth grinding habit.

For those who grind their teeth due to a dental problem, which typically results in more extreme bruxism, an appointment with the dentist is the wisest choice. There are some solutions available to correct tooth alignment issues. You may be fitted with a mouth guard to wear while you sleep at night which will protect your teeth from the damage that can be caused when grinding your teeth.

A dentist may also recommend putting in crowns or overlays, which often helps when your problem has resulted in sensitivity in your teeth.

If your teeth grinding is more likely a side effect to medication you are taking, then see if your doctor can change your prescription that does not have this as a side effect.

Children often outgrow Bruxism as they get older; however, if their teeth are being damaged by this condition or they are experiencing pain, then they should also receive treatment.

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