What is Bruxism?
Bruxism is the grinding or clenching of teeth. Bruxism can lead to facial pain, tooth wear, bone loss, and a decline in sleep quality.
Are you Experiencing Nocternal Bruxism Symptoms?
Bruxism often goes undetected as it may happen at night when you are asleep. It most often occurs in the early stages of sleep before deep sleep. Do you clench or grind your teeth at night? Find out with our Bruxism Checklist.
What Causes Sleep Bruxism?
Nearly 70% of Bruxism is caused by stress.
These habits and traits increase the chances of developing nocturnal bruxism.
Individuals who smoke on a regular basis are twice as likely to develop nocturnal bruxism than non-smoking individuals. Similar to the causes of this condition, there really isn’t an answer as to why smoking cigarettes can lead to bruxism.
Just like cigarettes, the ingestion of drugs and alcohol also double a patient's chance of developing nocturnal bruxism. You may enjoy the occasional glass of wine or two before going to bed to help you sleep – but, alcohol is known to break up sleeping patterns. If you sleep poorly, this triggers your muscles to hyper-activate and the teeth to grind.
Sleep Disordered Breathing
As it was mentioned above, people who sleep poorly are more likely to grind their teeth while they sleep than those who get a good night’s rest. If you are a snorer, or if your significant other is one, they are also twice as likely to exhibit nocturnal bruxism. Shallow breathing and/or snoring triggers their brain to respond which causes them to wake frequently during the night.
To most people, caffeine is considered a stimulant to help keep them energized during the day. What some people don’t know is that caffeine has a half-life of three to 12 hours after it’s consumed. Caffeine triggers muscle activity, which can cause frequent waking periods during the night that can contribute to nocturnal bruxism.
Adapted from an article written by Dr. Martin Mendelson, D.D.S.
An occlusal guard can protect your teeth from further damage and relieve symptoms helping wearers receive a more restful night's sleep.