Because teeth grinding normally occurs during sleep, many people don’t realize they have a problem. Instead, they may notice headaches, sore jaw, or worn teeth and wonder why. Dr. Spink in Vestavia Hills has advanced training in the diagnosis and treatment of bruxism (teeth grinding).
Identifying the Signs of Teeth Grinding
Few clinicians are trained to properly identify, diagnose and treat temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD). Dr. Spink has completed post-graduate training in the diagnosis and treatment of TMD, to bring patients in Vestavia Hills the highest level of care.
Signs and Symptoms of Teeth Grinding
- Worn, flat or chipped teeth
- Abraded tooth enamel
- Sensitive teeth
- Jaw pain or tightness in the jaw muscles
- Facial pain
- Cuts or sores on the inside cheek
Treatment for Teeth Grinding
When left untreated, bruxism can cause significant damage to teeth and contribute to painful symptoms like headaches and jaw pain. Stress is one of the primary causes for teeth grinding. Lifestyle changes and relaxation techniques may help to reduce or stop your teeth grinding. In many cases, though, professional treatment is needed to correct the source of the problem and repair damage caused teeth grinding.
Dr. Spink frequently uses custom mouth guards and splint therapy to stop teeth grinding. A mouth guard is a customized, removable appliance similar to a sports mouth guard that is made to fit over your teeth and prevent teeth grinding. Most mouth guards are worn at night, however, some patients wear their mouth guards during high-stress situations.
Bite Alignment Therapy
Dr. Spink provides a comprehensive and broad range of services to correct the causes of teeth grinding. Malocclusion, or improper alignment of the teeth, is one cause for teeth grinding. Teeth can be corrected to proper alignment through the use of Invisalign clear aligners, dental crowns, dental veneers or dental implants.
Cosmetic Dentistry to Repair Damage
Once the teeth grinding causes have been successfully treated, the dentist will focus on repairing damage caused by teeth grinding. Chronic teeth grinding can leave teeth worn, chipped or broken. Dr. Spink may repair teeth using dental crowns, porcelain veneers or cosmetic bonding.