After waking from a good night’s rest, many find that their teeth and jaws are exceptionally sore. While there are a number of potential underlying causes to this problem, teeth grinding is a common source of morning toothaches and jaw aches.
What impact does grinding have on teeth?
A chronic teeth-grinding condition can lead to teeth loosening and fracturing. In some cases, the teeth can come out of the root completely, leading to permanent loss. This type of condition may require the use of dental treatments such as bridges, crowns, root canals and implants. In addition to the direct impact on teeth, teeth grinding can also lead to hearing loss, and jaw conditions such as TMD (Temporomandibular Joint Disorders). This places the emphasis on grinding sufferers to work with their local dentist to find a solution to their teeth grinding issue.
What causes tooth grinding?
Teeth grinding, otherwise known as “bruxism”, is a problem that now affects 10% of the population. Many people are only aware of the problem when they are told by a partner who hears the teeth grinding during the night. For those who’ve recently experienced this painful start to their morning routine, it’s important to know how to prevent tooth grinding in the future.
Try skipping caffeine
Caffeine is one of the more commonly consumed stimulants, and is therefore one of the leading factors behind tooth grinding for many sufferers. To reduce instances of tooth grinding, it’s important to limit caffeine consumption. Cutting that daily coffee at the office can help start the day off in the right direction with no morning toothaches.
The stress factor
One of the foremost known causes of teeth grinding is stress. We’re more likely to clench our teeth if we’re tense, frustrated or anxious. It’s important to practice relaxation techniques to help reduce the impact of teeth grinding. Try to avoid stressful thoughts immediately before bed. Those who grind their teeth might also practice muscle relaxation exercises before bed so that built-up tension doesn’t cause overnight grinding.
Avoid hard or chewy foods
It has been shown that how our jaws are utilized during the day can impact how they act during rest at night time. Products such as gum and hard candy require our jaws to work overtime to break them down ready for ingesting. This can then lead to similar exertion during the evening as the muscles continue the pattern without conscious thought. Try to limit consumption of tough food materials to help keep the jaw in a relaxed and restful state. By making positive changes to your lifestyle, you can prevent those painful morning headaches. Speaking with trusted specialists is a great way to begin the rehabilitation process.