Three Factors Contributing to Your Chronic Grinding

pretty african american young woman have a toothacheWaking up with an aching jaw, headache, and tension is not a common phenomenon and one that will significantly impact your day. What’s more, letting these symptoms continue without remedy or examination to identify the problem can result in potentially serious disorders such as TMJ. In circumstances like these, it is better to act sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, symptoms such as these do not initially cause people to think of orthodontics initially, causing the situation to progress begore help is sought. Fortunately, your Fort Worth, TX orthodontists at Lake Country Orthodontics understands the complex situations that may lead to teeth grinding, and are here to help you understand exactly what is going on.

Breathing Regulation

It has been proven that bruxism, or chronic teeth grinding, is very much related to the body’s inherent desire to survive. This means that we grind our teeth because we need to in order to regulate our breathing. If this is the case, your bruxism may be indicative of a bigger concern known as sleep apnea. Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) occurs when our throat muscles relax while we sleep, preventing an open airway from occurring and causing periodic episodes of stopping and resumed breathing. Other side effects included in this disorder include chronic snoring, morning headaches, hypersomnia during the day, insomnia at night, among others. It can become a serious concern and require active care to manage, so it is imperative to contact your provider immediately if you suspect you may be experiencing OSA.

Jaw Misalignment

In addition to the attempt to regulate breathing, your chronic grinding can lead to much bigger concerns such as the development of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. Your TMJ’s are the joints in which your lower jaw hinges. When we experience significant bruxism, it can cause a misalignment or imbalance in one or both of the joints, resulting in untreatable migraines and/or headaches, popping or clicking in the jaw, chronic earaches, increased bruxism, and more. If you feel any of these symptoms apply to you, you may consider visiting your orthodontist to pursue TMJ Therapy. During this process, your provider will take highly precise measurements of your jaw and oral structures in order to create a custom appliance such as a splint to help realign your jaw. For more information, contact our team today.

Environmental Stressors

Another factor to consider that may be causing your teeth grinding can be external stressors such as situational anxieties, anxiety disorder, or stress. When individuals endure these disorders, a clenched jaw, chewing on the cheeks, and grinding can become apparent, even when you do not notice it. In this case, you should consider talking to an orthodontist to learn your options.

Contact Our Team Today

Teeth grinding can be caused by a variety of factors, and your orthodontist at Lake Country Orthodontics wants to help find a solution that works best for you. Contact our Fort Worth, TX office by calling 817-236-7846 to learn more or schedule an appointment today.