If you wake up with headaches, or your teeth have suddenly become sensitive to temperature, it could indicate bruxism. Individuals who clench their teeth, especially at night, may take longer to notice unless their partner tells them. However, if you clench during the day, either due to stress or anxiety, it may be easier to identify and stop the habit before it causes havoc to your dental health. Read on for signs that you clench your teeth when sleeping and what to do afterward to keep your mouth healthy.
How to Recognize that You Clench Your Teeth
If you clench your teeth at night, you may wake up with sore jaws. Also, your facial muscles and teeth will experience sensitivity when you consume cold foods and drinks. Your back teeth may also flatten due to the clenching, and, with time, both your front and back teeth will start to chip or crack. If you do not seek treatment at this point, the pain will worsen and spread to the ears, manifesting as earaches. Given the relation between your jaws and inner ear, you may also experience reduced jaw mobility and pain when opening or closing your mouth to bite, chew or speak. You may also hear some clicking sound from your jaws when eating, for severe cases.
What to Do After Noticing the Symptoms
If you experience any of the above symptoms, you should schedule an appointment with us for diagnosis and treatment. If untreated, teeth clenching will cause irreversible damage to your teeth. It may also result in temporomandibular disorder (TMJ), significantly affecting your quality of life. If you have tooth restorations such as crowns and fillings, teeth clenching will damage them. During your appointment, we will examine your teeth' physical condition and recommend appropriate treatment based on the damage's cause and extent. For more details on teeth clenching, contact our office today.