Many people will occasionally clench and grind their teeth during moments of stress. Bruxism is quite different, as most sufferers will habitually clench and grind during sleep. Unfortunately, bruxism places a great deal of stress on the teeth and jaws and without proper diagnosis and treatment, may cause considerable damage.
What are the Symptoms of TMJ and Bruxism?
The pressure caused by clenching and grinding can affect the temporomandibular joints or jaw joints, causing pain and inflammation and normal jaw movement may be difficult. This is called temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) and the pain caused can radiate outwards from your jaw, affecting the neck and shoulders and it may lead to chronic headaches. Teeth might look worn, cracked or chipped. In the worst cases, teeth can become loose or will be ground down to little more than stumps.
How is TMJ and Bruxism Diagnosed and Treated?
A careful examination using the most up-to-date diagnostic techniques will soon establish if you have bruxism. Often it can be treated with a custom-made night guard which will prevent teeth from contacting, protecting them against further damage. The most advanced dental treatments can durably restore teeth that have become badly damaged due to bruxism.
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