Bruxism is the clinical definition of teeth grinding, which involves the unconscious or conscious clenching or grinding of teeth in either one’s sleep or while they are awake. If left untreated, however, it can damage enamel and eventually lead to tooth breakage. Due to the stress that it puts on temporomandibular joint, it can cause headaches, earaches, facial pain, tense muscles and problems with your jaw.
Can Nail Biting Lead to Bruxism?
There is no clear reason why people grind their teeth. Dentists believe that it has to do with problematic teeth alignment, crooked teeth or as a result of sleep apnea. Doctors believe that teeth grinding is a response to both stress and anxiety. Studies have shown a link between antidepressants and bruxism, as well. Recent research has shown that anxiety in social situations has been particularly associated with an increased risk of bruxism.
There is also an association between nail biting and bruxism. That is, nail biting can lead to an increased risk of bruxism. Similarly, people who bite on pencils or bite their cheeks are also at an increased risk of developing bruxism as well as those who, in general, clench their teeth at various points in the day.
Nail biting can also cause additional dental problems, including damage to the gum tissue, which can make the inside of the mouth sore due to sharp fingernails.
How Bruxism is Treated:
Signs of bruxism include waking up with a sore jaw or headache, worn off tooth enamel (this causes extreme sensitivity) as well as a popping of the jaw.
If you suspect you are a teeth grinder (perhaps your partner has told you so), it is imperative to contact a dental professional to officially diagnose you and offer treatment. At Dawson Dental, our team of professionals will make you a customized night guard that will be ready in as little as one to two weeks. This will protect your teeth from further damage.
Dental Dawson goes beyond mere prevention. We want to treat the cause. We will do this through our neuromuscular and orthopedic dental treatment, which involves gentle electronic stimulation in order to relax your muscles to their original state. A custom, removable orthotic will be made to reposition your jaw and will allow your muscles to be deprogrammed.
Our team of professionals at Dawson Dental is knowledgeable and caring. If you are suffering from teeth grinding, contact us today.