Stress Grinding and Clenching

Posted .

In life you will deal with stress. Everyone does. It may come from your job or personal life. Stress materializes in different ways for different people. One common way that it appears is problematic for your oral health.

Jaw clenching and teeth grinding may occur when you are anxious or nervous about something. Bruxism is the medical term. You may not realize when you are doing it. The jaw clenching generally happens during the day, and would be most noticeable, while teeth grinding most often occurs when you are asleep. This makes it more difficult to catch. If you suspect you are doing this, you might ask a friend or family member to monitor you at night. Another modern option would be to set up a camera to record it for confirmation.

One tell-tale sign that this may be a problem is if you find your jaw muscles are frequently sore, or if your teeth become sensitive to hot and cold. You may need to see your dentist to fully confirm that clenching and grinding is the issue. Your dentist can determine if you have worn the enamel down on your teeth, or if there are micro-fractures, cracks or chips. If so, he may prescribe a mouthguard to wear when you sleep, or suggest anti-anxiety medication if you reveal that you’re undergoing a stressful period in your life.

If you need an evaluation for teeth clenching or grinding, Dr. Troy Walton would be happy to help you. Please contact Redwood Dental to make an appointment at: 435-755-6562, or come by our office in Providence, Utah.