Back to the Grind! What you need to know about grinding your teeth:
While you are sleeping, chances are your mouth is hard at work. Tooth grinding, or bruxism, is common among people of all ages. If you experience neck pain, jaw pain, or headaches – especially in the morning – it is likely your jaw muscle are hard at work. If you’ve experienced any of these symptoms, we encourage you to make your appointment today to have your teeth evaluated.
Even though grinding is prevalent, a very small proportion of people will actually experience symptoms. Grinding unfortunately sometimes goes untreated unless their dentist finds signs of wear on the teeth.
Treatments for tooth grinding can be as simple as reducing your stress level. As grinding is strongly associated with stress, this would help alleviate your grinding. As reducing stress levels in our hectic modern lives is not always as easy as it sounds, another solution is a custom made night guard. This helps to protect your teeth and your jaw from the grinding.
Tooth grinding usually diminishes as you grow older, but can cause serious issues with the teeth and jaw in the meantime. Make an appointment today to have your mouth professionally evaluated for signs of grinding and to see if a night guard can help you!
Dry mouth – more than just a nuisance!
It’s a problem that impacts more and more people. Dry mouth, or xerostomia, is an unfortunate side effect of most medications on the market today. It is also a side effect of getting older. As we age, our saliva flow decreases significantly. You may even have dry mouth today without knowing it; you’re not able to even tell you have dry mouth until your saliva flow has been significantly reduced!
The effects of dry mouth can be very harmful to your oral health. Saliva is proven to be very protective to your teeth and your gums, helping to guard against cavities and gum disease. If you have less saliva, you are more susceptible to these conditions!
Unfortunately, there is no treatment for dry mouth. However, there are many ways to counter the effects of dry mouth, and help with the very uncomfortable symptoms.
1. Avoid using sweet or sour candies to stimulate saliva flow – even if it helps make more saliva, the sugars and/or acid is doing more harm to your teeth than good!
2. Use a prescription or over-the-counter saliva substitute. These come as rinses, toothpastes, gums, sprays…any way to get your body to make a little more saliva!
3. Avoid mouthwashes that have alcohol in them – these tend to dry out the tissues in your mouth
4. Last but most importantly, use a prescription-level fluoridated toothpaste! Since your saliva isn’t able to do its job of protecting your teeth against cavities, give your teeth an extra boost in strength by using a prescription toothpaste.
Contact us today for an evaluation or for more information! The key to oral health is prevention. Help us to find issues before they begin by coming in regularly for your dental appointments.
Make an appointment today to have your mouth professionally evaluated for signs of grinding and to see if a night guard can help you!
Q: What causes dry mouth?
A: There are several causes of dry mouth. Dry mouth can be caused by many medications, especially medications for high blood pressure or for diabetes. Dry mouth is also linked with aging. If your dry mouth is medication-induced, do not stop taking your medication without consulting with your physician.
Q: Why is my dry mouth worse at night?
A: Nighttime dry mouth is very common, especially among people who breathe out of their mouths when they sleep. In addition, those who use devices for sleep apnea, like a CPAP machine, often experience more severe dry mouth.