Teeth Grinding, Clenching & headaches
diagnosis & TREATMENT
The muscles that are used to close your jaw for chewing are the same muscles that can cause clenching and grinding of the teeth. Your chewing muscles, teeth and jaw joints should work in harmony as a unit. Bruxism is a condition where there is an imbalance that can lead to harmful long term effects. Bruxing can also lead to migraine or tension-like headaches, facial pain and word down or fractured teeth. These actions usually occur during sleep, but occasionally they occur during the day.
We provide treatment solutions to prevent these headaches and pain in your jaw joint that could also be damaging forces to your teeth. Our comprehensive dental exam includes thorough evaluation of these muscles to identify any signs of tension, tenderness, or knots. We look inside the mouth for signs of tooth wear and/or fracture lines on the teeth that can be caused by grinding or clenching. Once a diagnosis has been made regarding any clenching or grinding, we treat the cause of these habits.
Dr. Kraft is passionate about helping her patients with these symptoms because it can cause long-term damage. Diagnosing and treating these issues are essential in order to preserve your teeth, joint and muscles longevity. Our goals in diagnosing are to make you comfortable, and prevent wear on teeth and/or headaches.
The two treatment approaches include splint therapy with an occlusal guard and/or equilibration, which involves minimally invasive re-shaping of teeth to balance the bite so all teeth are hitting with equal force. This treatment is done by adding material to the tooth structure or conservatively re-contouring the teeth to bring the teeth together evenly.