Your teeth are made for biting and chewing, but when there’s no food between them, the friction and pressure can cause significant dental damage. Known as bruxism, unconscious and sometimes-uncontrollable teeth-grinding can also lead to trouble with your jaw joints and muscles, a condition known as TMJ disorder. For many patients, the condition is most prominent at night, when sleep makes it impossible to notice teeth grinding. However, you might exhibit other signs of bruxism that can warn you to seek treatment as soon as possible before more extensive damage occurs.
As your teeth continuously rub against each other, the friction can wear down their chewing surfaces, which can change the landscape and balance of your bite. If your bite seems off-balance, or if your dentist notices excessive tooth wear during a routine examination, then you may need treatment to address your bruxism.
An excessively worn tooth is more likely to chip, crack, or break. In some cases, a patient may grind teeth hard enough to directly crack the tooth before it is worn down. If your bruxism is not treated, then a broken tooth will suffer even more damage, and before long, it might require extraction to save the rest of your oral health.
Even before a tooth becomes worn or broken, your teeth can grow sensitive from prolonged bruxism. If you suffer tooth sensitivity, or discomfort in your jaw’s joints and muscles, then bruxism may be to blame, and you should visit your dentist for a professional examination as soon as possible.
If you exhibit these or other signs of bruxism, then find out how your dentist can help with customized treatment. Schedule a consultation by calling Austin Prosthodontics in Austin, TX today at 512-250-9444.