Glendale TMJ Dentist Explains Problems with Bruxism and Teeth Grinding  

Written by Dr. McKay on Jun 29, 2021

Grinding your teeth and clenching your jaw while you sleep can lead to serious problems with your oral health. Some problems you may experience if you grind your teeth are bite misalignment, cracked or chipped teeth, and temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). You may also be aware of symptoms like chronic headaches upon waking, shoulder and neck pain, or a sensation that your jaw locks up when opening and closing your mouth.

However, after a thorough evaluation by our Glendale  TMJ Dentist, we can identify the probable cause of your teeth grinding and discuss which treatment approach may be necessary to prevent long-term damage to your teeth.

What Causes Teeth Grinding?

There are several reasons people grind or clench their teeth:

  • Injury or trauma to the temporomandibular joint
  • Misaligned dental bite
  • Muscle tension

A misaligned dental bite can cause your back teeth to become unbalanced, resulting in excess force being placed on one side of your mouth. In this case, you do not bite down evenly on all teeth, and the jaw shifts from its normal position to bring the rest of your teeth together.

This causes you to clench or grind your teeth on that side of your mouth and puts constant, unnatural force on the joint and surrounding muscles. This is why you experience head and neck pain.

How do You Treat Teeth Grinding?

In many cases, our Glendale TMJ Dentist can create a simple custom appliance called a night guard that will reduce this uneven force on your teeth. However, a thorough exam is the best way to assess your situation and determine the underlying cause and best treatment for your teeth grinding and clenching.

If you suspect that your symptoms are caused by teeth grinding, please contact our office. We will discuss your situation and work with you to determine the best course of treatment to address your needs and provide relief.