How Is Bruxism Treated?
The appropriate treatment for your bruxism will depend on what is causing it. By asking questions and examining your teeth, a dental professional can help you determine the source of your bruxism. Based on the amount of tooth damage and its likely cause, your dentist may suggest:
- Wearing an appliance while sleeping
- Finding ways to relax
- Reducing the "high spots" of one or more teeth
While it is not a cure, an appliance custom-made by a dental professional to fit your teeth is a way to manage bruxism. The appliance lessens the effects of teeth grinding by slipping over the upper teeth, so they don't contact the lower teeth.
We all face some form of stress in our everyday lives. While this is normal, tuning into stress and finding ways to manage it can help lessen bruxism. Mindfulness activities like practicing yoga, listening to music, reading a book, or taking a walk, are lifestyle changes that you can become part of your daily routine. Seeking counseling to learn effective ways of handling stressful situations can also help.
When you experience physical pain from bruxism, applying a warm, wet washcloth to the side of your face relaxes the muscles that become sore from clenching. An abnormal bite, one in which teeth do not fit well together, can be corrected with new fillings, crowns, or orthodontics to reduce the uneven areas that cause your mouth to sit abnormally.
While bruxism is a common ailment, it is essential to understand the causes of your specific form of bruxism and seek a dental professional's help in determining the best course of treatment. By managing stress, wearing a dentist-recommended appliance, and reducing abnormalities in your bite, you can reduce the effects of bruxism that often cause pain or damage to the teeth and jawline.