Sleep Bruxism

April 1, 2023

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Sleep bruxism, also known as teeth grinding or clenching during sleep, is a condition in which a person unconsciously clenches or grinds their teeth during sleep. It is a common condition that can affect both adults and children.

The exact cause of sleep bruxism is not known, but it is believed to be related to a combination of physical and psychological factors, such as stress, anxiety, and sleep disorders. Some medical conditions, such as sleep apnea and acid reflux, can also contribute to sleep bruxism.

Symptoms of sleep bruxism may include:

  • Grinding or clenching of teeth during sleep, often loud enough to be heard by a sleeping partner
  • Worn, flattened, or chipped teeth
  • Sore jaw, face, or neck muscles
  • Headaches
  • Disrupted sleep or insomnia

Treatment for sleep bruxism focuses on managing symptoms and preventing complications, such as tooth damage and jaw pain. This may include wearing a mouthguard or splint at night to protect the teeth and reduce clenching and grinding. Stress management techniques, such as relaxation exercises and therapy, may also be helpful in reducing symptoms.

In some cases, treating underlying medical conditions, such as sleep apnea or acid reflux, can also improve sleep bruxism symptoms. It is important to consult a dentist or healthcare provider if sleep bruxism is suspected, as untreated bruxism can lead to tooth damage, jaw pain, and other complications.

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