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Therapy Options for TMJ/TMD, Bruxism & Teeth Grinding

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Treatment Options for Teeth Grinding in Aurora, CO

While with most health issues it’s easy to tell that something is wrong, for TMJ/TMD and bruxism, diagnosing the issue can be much more difficult. This is because these issues often occur while you are sleeping. This, in turn, leads to a lot of confusion during the daytime as to why they are experiencing so much pain and discomfort. In order to avoid the pain and damage to the jaw and teeth that comes with bruxism and TMJ/TMD it’s important to understand what they are, as well as what symptoms to look for. This will allow a patient to seek the treatment that they need to halt the progression of the ailment, and even reverse it completely.

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What is Bruxism?

Bruxism is an ailment involving the grinding or clenching of the teeth at night. Many patients don’t know that they have bruxism, as it is occurring while they sleep. If a patient is lucky enough to have a significant other that sleeps next to them, they may be made aware of the issue from their loved one. Otherwise, the patient will need to look for certain symptoms of the ailment to get a better understanding of what may be going on as they sleep. Below are a few of the symptoms of bruxism that can help a patient to determine whether or not they are suffering from this disorder while they sleep:

  • Headaches
  • Fractured Teeth
  • Loose Teeth
  • Worn Teeth
  • Jaw Pain or Discomfort
  • Hearing Loss
  • TMJ/TMD

If bruxism goes untreated, it can lead to massive issues to the patient’s health that are irreversible. That is why it is extremely important for patients to visit their dentist as soon as they experience these symptoms. The dentist will help to diagnose and then treat the ailment—oftentimes beginning with a night guard. Still, there are certain things that a patient can do to lessen the chances of bruxism, or even clear up the disorder on their own.

These include:

  • Cutting back on drinking alcohol.
  • Reducing stress throughout the day.
  • Drinking less caffeine—particularly before bedtime.
  • Introducing jaw relaxation techniques.

If bruxism persists after making these changes, a patient will need to visit a dentist as soon as possible. Even if the disorder is being treated by a dentist, these changes should be made to make the treatment more effective, and to attempt to stop the disorder from continuing to occur.

What is TMJ/TMD?

TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder) and TMD (Temporomandibular Disorder) are other disorders that involve the jaw that have similar treatment methods to bruxism. Actually, TMJ/TMD is often connected to bruxism. A few of the issues a patient should look out for to better determine whether or not they have TMJ/TMD include:

  • Lockjaw
  • Jaw Fatigue
  • Swelling of the Jaw
  • Trouble with Chewing
  • Pain in the Neck, Face, Jaw and Shoulders

While a dentist will likely be necessary to determine why exactly it is that a patient is experiencing TMJ/TMD, there are a few common reasons. Some of these include:

  • Bruxism
  • Injury
  • Arthritis
  • Dislocation of the Cushioning Disc of the Joint

Make sure to set an appointment with a dentist as soon as possible to treat TMJ/TMD to stop its progression and reduce the risks of permanent damage.

Call Baer Dental Designs Today at (303) 557-6453

What is a Night Guard & Why Use It?

When treating bruxism or TMJ/TMD, a dentist will often use a night guard. A night guard is a plastic dental appliance that is used by the patient as they sleep. These guards are custom made for each individual patient to ensure the proper treatment of their ailment.

Night guards are an excellent form of treatment for bruxism and TMJ/TMD for a variety of different reasons—which is why dentists will often use them to treat these issues. Some of the reasons for a night guard include:

Reduction of Pain and Discomfort

Anyone that suffers from bruxism and/or TMJ/TMD understands the level of pain that comes from these disorders. They can often lead to lasting headaches throughout the day, jaw pain and so much more. This can make it difficult to focus, bite, chew and more. Night guards help to reduce or eliminate this pain.

Lower Dental Care Costs

It’s important to understand that bruxism and TMJ/TMD don’t just cause pain—they also cause damage to the teeth and jaw. This can in turn lead to the need for various teeth repair procedures that are uncomfortable and extremely costly. A night guard significantly reduces the chances of lasting damage—saving money on future dental care procedures.

Dual Treatment

Night guards can be used to treat both TMJ/TMD and bruxism—making them a simple solution for multiple oral health issues.

Am I a Candidate

In order to better understand if you need a night guard and if you are a candidate for one, you’ll need to schedule an appointment with a dentist. They will then determine the source of your oral health issues. If they diagnose you with TMJ/TMD and/or bruxism, they will likely offer a night guard as a solution. From there they will begin the process of creating a custom night guard for your particular teeth and jaw, as well as for your particular needs.

Caring for a Guard

Because your night guard will be in your mouth every night, it’s important to keep it clean for the sake of your oral health—otherwise your gums may become diseased. It’s also good to take care of your night guard to ensure its longevity. Make sure to soak your night guard in a special solution and brush it regularly to keep it clean, and to ensure your ongoing oral health.

Consultation

If you are concerned about pain in your jaw, swelling, headaches, hearing loss or any other issues involving your teeth and/or jaw, make sure to set an appointment with your dentist for as soon as you can visit them. From there, they will look at your teeth and jaw, and help to determine the best course of action for treatment.

Our dental clinic is conveniently located in Aurora, CO near Southlands but also services Lakewood, Thornton, Arvada, Centennial, Stapleton, Green Valley Ranch, Castle Rock, Virginia Village, Parker, Littleton, and all neighboring communities.

Baer Dental Designs has Won the 5280 Top Dentists Award Every Year Since 2011

2012 Top Dentist 5280 Magazine
2013 Top Dentist 5280 Magazine
2014 Top Dentist 5280 Magazine
2015 Top Dentist 5280 Magazine
2016 Top Dentist 5280 Magazine
2017 Top Dentist 5280 Magazine
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