We are all clenching our jaws or occasionally grinding our teeth. But when that grinding becomes a regular, chronic problem, it's a disorder that we call bruxism — an oral condition that leads to serious side effects. Check out the top four reasons you could clench your teeth, and how you can stop doing it today! Your dentist in Greenville and Appleton WI are in on everything you need to know about bruxism.
# 1 ANXIETY AND STRESS
It's no wonder you may clench your jaw when you're stressed or anxious and grind your teeth while you're sleeping. In fact , research shows that as a result of their stress, 70 percent of people grind their teeth, with some anxiety-elevating prescription drugs or a highly heavy workload increasing the effect. Meditation, relaxation, and psychoanalysis can all help to alleviate the grinding of teeth caused by stress and anxiety.
# 2 CAFFEINE BEFORE BED
There also seems to be a connection between nocturnal consumption of caffeine and clenching of teeth during sleep. It makes sense — the caffeine increases your energy and heart rate, and the result may be poor sleep and teeth grinding. Try switching to decaf or water after 3 pm to avoid the habit.
# 3 CONSUMPTION OF TOBACCO AND ALCOHOL
Adults who use tobacco and alcohol heavily, particularly at night, are also more prone to bruxism. Both influence the process of sleep (especially when combined), and can result in frequent interruptions of REM or sleeplessness. These signs are commonly accompanied by grinding teeth. Try to cut back on or quit both altogether- for the good of your teeth as well as for your overall health.
# 4 DISORDERS ON SLEEP
In reality, the most common cause of bruxism is the presence of another sleep disorder, such as chronic snoring or obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). Both of these conditions cause frequent sleep interruptions — someone with sleep apnea may actually have their sleep interrupted more than a hundred times in one night. If you believe you or a loved one are suffering from severe snoring or OSA, don't hesitate to get it diagnosed straight away and protect your overall health in the long run. The search for a correct diagnosis is the first step towards finding much needed relief in the sleep of a full night.
As for bruxism, we can help you right here in Greenville or Appleton. Schedule an appointment for teeth grinding treatment with our dentist in Greenville today.