Tooth Grinding and Headaches
Could a common dental problem be causing your headaches? If you tend to wake up with headaches, you may have a common problem known as bruxism, or tooth grinding. While it is not uncommon to occasionally clench your jaw when feeling anxious or stressed, chronically clenching your jaw or grinding your teeth can cause serious problems. Unfortunately, many people who grind are unaware that they do it, because it occurs while they are sleeping. The first indication that they have a problem may not occur until the damage is already done.
Symptoms of bruxism include waking with a headache, jaw tenderness, mouth pain, excessively worn teeth and stress fractures. Bruxism can occur as a result of stress or anxiety, but it may also be linked to a bad bite or other dental problems. Treatment will generally depend on the cause of your bruxism and your own personal preferences.
Anti-anxiety medications, stress reduction activities, antidepressants, orthodontic treatment or physical therapy may all play a role in your recovery. We will usually recommend a mouth guard to sleep with to help prevent grinding, also. Mouth guards are designed to cushion your teeth while you sleep and keep you from doing any more damage. Some types of mouth guards can actually stop the clenching and grinding action.
Without treatment, you may not only continue to suffer from headaches, but will also be at a higher risk of suffering from broken teeth, TMJ disorder, lost or damaged restorations and other dental problems. Call us today to learn more about tooth grinding and headaches or to schedule an appointment with our Los Angeles dentist.
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