Treating bruxism

Speculations over the causes of bruxism

Until recently, the established professional opinion has been that the causes of bruxism are virtually unknown. However, there have been speculations (based on statistics) pointing to a few possible causes of this disorder. Those who claim to have discovered the cause of bruxism validate therapies based on eliminating the cause (such as relaxation techniques, reducing caffeine consumption, etc.), or attempt to reduce the negative effects of clenching and grinding of the teeth by means that have nothing to do with the cause and simply attempt to counterbalance the symptoms (by wearing night guards).

Bruxism—the mere symptom of an orthodontic problem?

Recent studies indicate a surprisingly large number of bruxism patients have developed this most unfortunate mania as a result of untreated orthodontic issues.

Bruxism seems to be just another negative effect of ignoring one’s orthodontic issues. Bruxism can lead to teeth erosion, enamel fractures, dental hypersensitivity, dental filling loss, TMJ disorders, neck pain, terrible headaches, and even forms of periodontal disease.

Regrettably, in certain social environments people tend to believe that dental braces and all the other orthodontic treatments available are nothing but signs of vanity. Understanding that orthodontic treatments are a medical necessity and occlusion adjustments are not limited to aesthetic enhancements is highly important. Out of ignorance and prejudice, some patients are truly at risk of losing their teeth.

Causes of malocclusion

Imperfect occlusion can have a variety of different causes:

  1. some patients have too big or too small a jaw to be able to bite properly;
  2. others have developed malocclusion

a)      as their teeth migrated on the jaw due to tooth loss and prolonged delay of dental restoration work,

b)     or simply because they have not been able to properly assess what tooth feels high when biting.

Solutions

Should your bruxism be the result of stress-related factors, we highly recommend relaxation techniques as an efficient and pleasant treatment to your problems: less conventional, these practices have proven of great help for many patients. But, however efficient aromatherapy may be for your nerves, it won’t be able to fix your malocclusion. Before relying on relaxation techniques only, make sure that the cause of your teeth grinding is not mechanical!

You might be surprised to find a quick and easy solution to bruxism at the nearest orthodontic office. Normally, the orthodontic dentist will perform a computerized occlusal analysis before deciding the necessary adjustments. You will find that procedures are personalized, analysis particularly complex, and the results begin to show earlier than expected.

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