Stress can lead you to grind your teeth. Sometimes this happens when you’re awake; other people grind their teeth in their sleep. It’s a very common reaction to feeling confused, overwhelmed, or highly anxious. Grinding your teeth can result in a headache, neck pain, and other body aches. It’s also a behavior that can really hurt your teeth. Grinding your teeth causes them to wear more rapidly. Enamel is lost. Individual teeth can crack or be otherwise damaged. Sometimes people even lose teeth because they grind their teeth in their sleep.
Unfortunately, it is very difficult to get out of the habit of grinding your teeth. Many people who successfully stop grinding their teeth use a combination of behavioral therapies and assistive devices such as one gets from our Quincy dental practice. This combination works best when it’s possible to address and remedy the underlying cause of stress. Sometimes, during a short duration event, such as finishing up graduate school, this is possible. Other times, when there are multiple sources of stress, or stresses expected to have a prolonged duration, eliminating the stress entirely may not be possible. In those instances, learning multiple stress management techniques can help reduce the tendency to grind the teeth.
The damage caused by grinding your teeth can be cosmetic or medical. Your Quincy dental practice is the best place to find out what’s going on with your smile. There are treatments such as tooth contouring and the use of porcelain veneers that can address the appearance of teeth damaged by tooth grinding. In instances where one or more teeth are missing due to significant or prolonged tooth grinding, you’ll want to talk to your Quincy dentist about dental implants. This is the ideal solution to restore the look and functionality of your smile, without having to lose additional teeth to allow for dentures.