What is bruxism or teeth grinding?
Bruxism is an alteration of the mouth that consists on exerting too much pressure or grinding the teeth without noticing it.
This condition can occur at night (nocturnal bruxism) or during the day (diurnal bruxism). It is a problem that, in addition to affecting the teeth, which could result in the erosion or loss of some teeth, is the cause of other problems, such as neck pain, headache, pain in the jaws, insomnia, eating disorders, etc.
Bruxism, when it occurs during the day, can be controlled better than when it occurs at night. The nocturnal bruxism is particularly negative in that it often prevents sleeping in people who suffer from it. In most cases there is an unconscious and involuntary tooth grinding and rubbing pressure of some teeth with others. This hard contact, besides eroding the teeth, causes a nasty noise that can disturb the sleeping partners of the patient.
It is a fairly common disorder that affects 25% of the adult population, although most are unaware they suffer from it.
Symptoms of bruxism
The main symptoms are:
- Pain in the jaw
- Worn teeth
- Broken or very flat teeth
- Pain in the neck or backache
- Vertigo, etc.
Causes of bruxism
Movements that the jaw performs and that originate the grinding of teeth or bruxism
The main causes of bruxism are:
- Stress: One of the main causes of this alteration is stress. Clenching is a way to release inner tension. The muscles of the jaw (masseter) react with strong tension when facing a situation of stress. (When you’re angry, nervous, upset, etc. we tend to clench the teeth)
- Dental malocclusion: Sometimes the teeth above and below do not fit well. This malocclusion is responsible for this disorder.
- Genetics: People who have relatives with this problem have more possibilities of suffering it.
- Lack of calcium: There is a nonwell documented theory that says bruxism may be caused by lack of calcium, especially nocturnal bruxism in children.
Diagnosis of bruxism
Niño con los dientes gastados por bruxismo.
Discovering the existence of this disorder is necessary to prevent the teeth from being affected.
Facing the possible symptoms of bruxism, you must go to the specialist to diagnose the reasons for them.
The dentist can quickly identify them by inspecting the teeth and, if necessary, using radiography.
Treatment of bruxism
Through this analysis, the specialist will determine whether dental intervention is necessary (braces) to correct any mismatches between the teeth or if it is a nerve problem that requires psychological care.
While the problem is solved, the dentist may recommend using special molds protectors (bite splint) at night, to prevent further pressing and teeth grinding.
The natural treatment of bruxism, produced by tension, involves using a series of techniques and resources that tend to relax the patient to stop the excessive pressure exerted on the jaws.
28 March, 2019