Bruxism is excessive grinding or clenching of the teeth that is not part of normal chewing movement. It can lead to excess wear on the teeth and may cause permanent damage to the teeth and the jaw joints.
Signs and symptoms of bruxism may include:
- Sensitivity to heat and cold
- Clicking of the jaw joint
- Facial pain with tension headaches
- Earache or pain in the jaw joint
- Flattened and worn tooth surfaces
- Loose, broken or chipped teeth
- Micro fractures of the tooth enamel
Treatment may involve the making of a night guard or bite splint to protect teeth from injury and wear and reduce facial pain. Some patients may require muscle relaxant tablets at night. We may also recommend counselling, stress management or relaxation methods for stress-related causes of bruxism.