Scottsbluff Dentist Prevents Stress From Wrecking Your Smile

If you would rather not have stress and anxiety take a toll on your smile, then take a deep breath and talk to a Scottsbluff dentist about your options. Anxiety and stress are the chief motivators in patients who suffer from teeth clenching and grinding problems. It’s a problem the leads to undesirable oral health consequences that catches many patients completely by surprise.

The clinical diagnosis is bruxism, in which the teeth are forcefully clenched or gritted together, tends to occur most often when patients are asleep. The pressure that bruxism imposes on the muscles, jaw joint, and teeth is much more destructive than you might have imagined. It’s a chronic problem that wears the teeth down, creates troubling jaw pain, headaches, and even bone loss. Many patients also experience sensitive teeth and clicking when the jaw opens and closes.

There are other potential causes for bruxism, such as an orthodontic bite problem or alignment issue, but daily stress has been shown to be the greatest contributing factor for most patients.

The most conservative way to address chronic bruxism is to make an effort to relax. Reducing your stress levels and making a conscious effort to relax your jaw muscles may be enough to help you break the habit. Also, periodic massages of the face, neck, and jaw will help to alleviate some tension. Whenever possible, avoid crunching on hard candies, nuts, and ice, while cutting back on chewing gum.

However, if you are among the large percentage of patients who are unable to control nightly grinding and clenching, you should visit a Scottsbluff dental office to find out if a custom mouthguard or night guard is the right solution for you. These simple appliances will provide some much needed protection during the times that you are most likely to suffer from bruxism. The mouthguard may be worn every single night or as needed, during periods of increased stress.

For more information, schedule your appointment for a consultation today.