Have you ever noticed that when you close your mouth naturally, your upper and lower teeth don’t touch? That’s because they’re only supposed to touch when you’re chewing. For people who grind and clench, however, their teeth meet in a way that can lead to unusual wear and tear, as well as a condition called TMJ, or temporomandibular joint disorder. When this happens, the consequences may not only be detrimental to your oral health but your daily well-being, too. Fortunately, Dr. Scotto-Lavino can treat teeth grinding and clenching—also called bruxism—with a custom nightguard.
The truth of the matter is that almost all of us grind or clench our teeth at times, such as when we’re stressed or angry. Problems can begin when bruxism becomes habitual, usually at night when you’re asleep. Your bed partner—or anyone else in the house—may hear the unmistakable sound of your bruxism, but in addition the other symptoms that can initially indicate teeth grinding and clenching include:
- Sore jaw and facial muscles
- Sensitive teeth, because of worn enamel
- Tight jaw muscles
Obviously, these symptoms can impact both your oral health as well as your day-to-day living. Although bruxism happens mostly at night, the pain and headaches can linger throughout the day. Without treatment, additional complications can set in, such as worn or flattened teeth; recessed gums; chipped and cracked teeth; loose teeth; damaged fillings, porcelain crowns and dentures; and TMJ.
Bruxism Treatment from the Dentist, Selden, NY, Trusts
Unfortunately, bruxism cannot be cured. However, treatment is available.
Dr. Scotto-Lavino will examine your teeth for signs of bruxism, which is often indicated by cusps (the upper tips of your teeth) that appear flat. If found, then he will prescribe a custom-fitted nightguard. Made of smooth yet sturdy plastic, this oral appliance fits comfortably in your mouth to prevent your teeth from meeting while you sleep. Moreover, a nightguard absorbs the pressure of grinding and clenching, so you teeth do not and your jaw and muscles are given some relief.
Call Our Office Today
If you suspect that you grind your teeth at night, or if you hear another member of family grinding their teeth, then schedule a consultation with Dr. Scotto-Lavino. A nightguard might be able to save your smile and your day! Located in Selden, NY, our office serves Mt. Sinai, Port Jefferson and beyond.