Bruxism Treatment Bensalem, PA

Bruxism, or teeth clenching and grinding, is a common symptom of TMD. Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD) are bite disorders that often occur due to injury or stress. Pressure or injury to the TMJ, or the temporomandibular joints that connect the skull and jaw bone, can create bruxism. Our Bensalem, PA, dental office treats bruxism, a highly damaging yet common dental concern.

In addition to teeth clenching and grinding, we treat other symptoms that accompany TMJ disorders. Treating these symptoms at Perfect Smiles of Bensalem can relieve everyday pain and discomfort.

Bruxism in Bensalem PA

Common Symptoms of Bruxism

When you clench and grind your teeth, you can experience these problems:

  • Morning headaches or migraines
  • Tooth pain
  • Jaw clicking or popping
  • Discomfort when biting or chewing
  • Facial pain (including jaw pain)
  • Earaches

Problems like crooked teeth can contribute to teeth clenching and grinding. When you don’t have a balanced bite, you can experience increased pressure on some of your teeth more than others.

Stress can also cause bruxism. You can unconsciously clench and grind your teeth in stressful daily situations. At night, you can grind your teeth without even noticing. Waking up with a morning headache, jaw pain, or tooth sensitivity may be the only signs you have bruxism.

Habits like nail biting, cheek biting, or using teeth as tools can increase your chance of awake bruxism. This type of bruxism occurs during the day. Continual mouth movements increase stress on the jaw.

An injury to your TMJ can also lead to clenching and grinding. If you cannot smoothly open and close your mouth, you can have increased pressure on the jaw joints.

We recommend contacting our dentist as soon as you notice these symptoms. Bruxism can worsen over time. In the most severe cases, you can experience these problems after developing bruxism:

  • Arthritis in the TMJ
  • Tooth wear
  • Broken teeth

Professional treatment for teeth clenching and grinding will help reduce the frequency and intensity of bruxism. Contacting a dentist when you notice bruxism can relieve your symptoms sooner.

How to Treat Bruxism in Bensalem, PA

If you have damage from bruxism, we will often recommend the same treatments we provide for TMD. You will likely need multiple treatments to keep teeth clenching and grinding in check.

These treatments help relieve your pain and minimize the times you clench or grind your teeth:

  • Bite Adjustment: We recommend a bite adjustment if your bad bite contributes to teeth grinding. For this adjustment, we will create a balanced bite to reduce stress on the teeth and jaw. We may recommend reshaping damaged teeth or straightening crooked teeth with orthodontic treatment. A bite adjustment will change the way your teeth come together.
  • Night Guard: A night guard may look similar to a mouthguard, but its purpose is to stop teeth clenching and grinding. It covers the upper or lower teeth with a hard acrylic, discouraging jaw movement. The best night guard for bruxism is custom-made by a dentist. We use high-quality materials and custom impressions to create a night guard to protect your teeth.
  • Trigger Point Injections: We provide trigger point injections that inject medication into the muscles surrounding the TMJ. This medication helps relax the facial muscles. Muscle relaxation helps relieve headaches, tooth pain, and jaw soreness due to teeth grinding.
  • Physical Therapy: During physical therapy, you can learn exercises for your arms, back, and shoulders. These exercises help relieve tension in the upper body that can contribute to bruxism. Your physical therapist can also provide heat and massage to relax your facial muscles.

Bruxism FAQs

We welcome you to learn more about bruxism or teeth grinding in Bensalem, PA, with answers to these common questions:

How can I relax my jaw?

If you notice yourself clenching your teeth and jaw, you can relax your jaw to relieve tension. To do this, position your tongue by gently placing the tip on the roof of your mouth behind your upper teeth.

When you find yourself clenching your teeth, putting your tongue in this position can help retrain your mouth. Over time, as you get used to this position, you can experience less everyday pain.

Does heat or cold help jaw pain?

When you first injure your jaw, you can use ice to stop the pain from your injury. If you experience reoccurring jaw pain due to teeth clenching and grinding, use a heating pad on your jaw. We recommend using the heating pad for fifteen minutes at a time. Heat will help relax your facial muscles and reduce your pain.

Can medication cause teeth grinding?

Yes, in some cases, SSRIs, or Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors, can contribute to increased teeth clenching and grinding. SSRIs can lower dopamine levels, leading to stiff muscles. Sometimes, changing medicines can help treat teeth grinding.

Can I get tinnitus if I have bruxism?

If you clench and grind your teeth, you can experience ear problems like tinnitus. The TMJ is close to your ears, which means pressure on the joints can lead to pressure in the ears. You can damage your auditory structures if you have TMD.

Can a bad bite cause teeth clenching and grinding?

Yes. Malocclusion, also known as a bad bite, can increase your risk of developing bruxism. If you have missing teeth, crooked teeth, damaged teeth, or overcrowding, the pressure from your bite can facilitate teeth grinding.

When your teeth do not properly fit together, your jaw can overcompensate. Increased jaw movement means increased tooth movement or teeth clenching and grinding.

Can you break a tooth if you grind your teeth?

Yes. You can damage your teeth if you clench and grind regularly. Severe bite pressure can chip, crack, or wear down your tooth enamel. You likely have tooth wear if you experience tooth sensitivity and bruxism.

Treat Jaw and Tooth Pain

Get bruxism treatment in Bensalem, PA, today. Call Perfect Smiles of Bensalem at 215-770-1081 or schedule your next dental visit online. Please let us know if you have questions about managing your teeth clenching and grinding. We will be happy to help.