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Did you know that clenching your teeth, which is also known as bruxism, can occur while you’re sleeping or when you’re awake? Often people clench their teeth without realizing what they’re doing. This is especially problematic because you may clench your teeth while you’re sleeping. 

Furthermore, while clenching your teeth may not seem too serious, bruxism could ultimately lead to losing teeth if left untreated. Similarly, if you have bruxism, you could also be more vulnerable to tooth decay because you could wear down the protective layer of your teeth—known as your enamel. Clenching your teeth could lead to tension headaches or even migraines.

Fortunately, even though you could be clenching your teeth unwillingly, there are a few symptoms you can watch for. For instance, as a result of teeth grinding, you could experience dull headaches, especially after you sleep. Your mouth and muscles may frequently feel sore. You may also experience pain in your ear, damage to the insides of your cheeks, and even indentations on your tongue.  

The good news is, there are a number of things you can do to address bruxism, depending on the source of your habit. This may include reducing your stress levels, drinking more water, getting more sleep, and making a conscious effort to relax the facial muscles and jaw muscles throughout the day. Often, a custom mouth guard will help. We are pleased to offer custom mouth guards as well as night guards for our patients.

If you’re interested in learning more about bruxism, please feel free to give Paul Vartabedian, DDS at 707-263-1496. Dr. Paul Vartabedian and our team will be happy to answer any questions you may have. We’re eager to hear from you soon!