Do you grind your teeth? Do you think you grind your teeth? Do you not know if you grind your teeth?
Grinding your teeth can lead to a variety of problems and can happen for a variety of reasons.
So, how do you know if you’re grinding your teeth?
There are a few ways to determine if you’re a teeth grinder. If you don’t notice any of the following or can’t tell if you are doing these, don’t worry, your dentist will know.
Have you experienced any of the following:
Dull, light headaches
Popping jaw (you can hear and sometimes feel it when you open and close your mouth)
Wake up with a sore jaw
Shoulders feel tight all the time
Teeth feel sensitive
These are all pretty good indications that you are grinding your teeth. Sometimes people grind their teeth while they are sleeping and don’t even notice. You could be reading this right now and your shoulders are up to your ears and your jaw is clenched and you didn’t even notice. So, what can you do about it?
The easiest thing when clenching your jaw during the day is to become hyper-aware of it. Take breaks during the day and take a deep breath and relax your jaw. Roll your shoulders, move your mouth in various directions. Do this when you’re stuck at a red light, reading a book, watching a movie, or writing a blog post about grinding your teeth.
The harder fix is if you are doing this in your sleep. Your dentist may suggest a night mouth guard to protect your teeth. Ultimately the best thing you can do is try to lower your stress. Also, make sure you drink lots of water, get plenty of exercise, and avoid caffeine.
Find things that help you relax. Read a book before bed (not looking at a screen at lease 30 minutes before bed will lead to better sleep). Maybe you want to meditate or work on a hobby or just listen to music. Some people like to use sleeping apps like the Calm app to help. Anything you can do to prepare your brain and body for a better nights sleep will help.
Be consistent with your sleeping routine. When you stick to your routine it will help you brain to relax and it will associate your actions with preparing for better sleep.
The best thing you can do is to visit your dentist to see what they suggest. It is not unheard of for your dentist to recommend a massage for better dental health. Maybe look for a masseuse in your area that specializes in jaws. Chiropractic care can help with jaw issues that come from grinding your teeth as well.
The information on this Blog is provided for general information, is not intended to provide medical, dental or surgical advice, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. No dentist/patient relationship is established by your use of this Site. No diagnosis or treatment is being provided. The information contained here should be used in consultation with a dentist of your choice. No guarantees or warranties are made regarding any of the information contained within this Blog.