While a common concern that is simple to treat if caught early, dental decay can cause a number of significant complications to your oral health. For example, harmful bacteria and infection can damage your tooth roots and lead to difficulties biting, chewing, eating, and more. What’s worse? You can take every step necessary to protect your grin, but it only takes falling short in your preventive routine once to invite these concerns in. Still, decay is not the only concern plaguing your oral health. In today’s blog, your Pella, IA dentist discusses what it means to suffer from chronic teeth-grinding and how it can lead to a worse condition if treatment is not sought.
The Wear on Your Teeth
Bruxism, also known as chronic teeth-grinding, is the practice of clenching the lower and upper teeth together, then moving your lower jaw from side to side. This process generates friction, and the intensity at which your structures are clenched together can result in significant wearing and physical damage.
When a person experiences bruxism, it can be difficult to identify the issue readily. Indeed, while it can occur when one is conscious, it more often than not happens at night when a person is fast asleep. It is not impossible to discern, however, and a few telltale signs can indicate there is an issue. For example, waking with a tense or sore jaw, difficulty biting and chewing, and even problems fully opening the mouth can be indicative of consistent bruxism. To learn more about this process and what your best steps are for treatment, give our team a call today.
Progression of Concerns
While the immediate effects of bruxism might be slight soreness, bear in mind that the condition will only get worse as time progresses. As a matter of fact, you become increasingly more at risk for developing a dangerous jaw dysfunction known as TMJ disorder. During this phenomenon, your lower jaw becomes misaligned with one or both of your temporomandibular joints (TMJs) at which it hinges to your skull. This is a direct impact of untreated teeth-grinding and can lead to significant tissue tearing and damage. Give our team a call today to set up your appointment and learn your next steps.
How to Seek Treatment
When patients come to us regarding jaw dysfunction, pain, and bruxism, our team will work closely with them to develop a custom treatment plan. This can consist of an oral appliance to protect your structures while you slumber, as well as guided splint therapy that helps your jaw realign naturally.
Learn More Today
To learn more about the significant dangers that arise from chronic bruxism and TMJ disorder, contact Allen & Neumann Family Dentistry in Pella, IA by calling 641-628-1121 to schedule your next office visit with our team today.