How can I protect my teeth from tooth grinding?

Bruxism, commonly known as “tooth grinding,” is the clenching and grinding of your upper and lower teeth. The biting force can be four times greater during sleep. Complications that may occur from bruxism are:

  • Broken fillings
  • Jaw pain
  • Tooth aches
  • Headaches and/or earaches
  • Tooth sensitivity 
  • Wear down of enamel 

 How can I protect my teeth from tooth grinding?

Bruxism, commonly known as “tooth grinding,” is the clenching and grinding of your upper and lower teeth. The biting force can be four times greater during sleep. Complications that may occur from bruxism are:

  • Broken fillings
  • Jaw pain
  • Tooth aches
  • Headaches and/or earaches
  • Tooth sensitivity 
  • Wear down of enamel 

While there is no cure for bruxism, it can be managed by using a night guard.

How often should I change my toothbrush?

You should change your toothbrush every three months or if the bristles become worn. If you are sick with any bacterial infection, you should change your toothbrush once you’ve gotten better.  

What is dry mouth?

Xerostomia, commonly referred as “dry mouth,” is a condition that happens when your mouth doesn’t produce enough saliva. Saliva helps control the bacteria in your mouth as well as washes away any food debris. Certain diseases, medication, or even tobacco use (smoking and chewing) can cause dry mouth. Symptoms of dry mouth may include:

  • Frequent thirst
  • Dry feeling in the mouth and throat
  •  A dry, red, or raw tongue
  • Sore throat and dry passageways
  •  Bad breath
  •  Trouble speaking, tasting, chewing, and swallowing
  •  Cracked or split skin at the corners of the mouth

In order to treat your dry mouth, your dentist may ask you a series of question pertaining to your health and every day habits. Depending on the answer, they may be able to help by recommended products or at home treatment methods. Some methods may include talking to your primary care physician if you are taking medications that may affect your saliva flow or increasing your water intake. Quitting tobacco usage may also be a likely recommendation. 

What is Periodontal Disease?

Periodontal disease is an infection of the gums and bones that support the teeth. Periodontal disease occurs when the gum tissue pulls away from the tooth. A person who suffers from periodontal disease is more prone to tooth loss. Because periodontal disease may not be painful, people who do not visit their dentist routinely may not notice they have it until it is too late. Treatment depends on the type of disease and the severity of it. If the disease is caught in the early stages, while it is gingivitis, you may only need a professional cleaning. In advanced stages, the first step in treating it involves scaling and root planing. 

 

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