Back to BlogTips for Preventing the Grinding of Teeth 05 Jan 2017 | 0 CommentsWhen someone experiences bruxism, they usually clench their teeth without realizing it. This unconscious action might occur while awake or asleep. If a patient has this problem while sleeping, the issue is known as sleep bruxism. Even people who are unaware of the issue usually have symptoms of this behavior. By paying attention to symptoms, it may be possible to prevent teeth grinding to avoid more serious issues. Watching for Symptoms Common symptoms often indicate a problem. Teeth grinding may be so loud that it disturbs a partner's sleep during the night. It's also possible that teeth will show signs of wear, with chipping and flattening being common signs of grinding. People may also be experiencing fatigue and pain in the jaw, headaches, tooth sensitivity, and earaches. Injuries could also occur to the tongue and insides of the cheeks from this repetitive activity. Preventative Measures Rising anxiety and stress could lead some people to grinding. To combat this tendency, it may help patients to take steps to reduce anxiety. Daily exercise, meditation, massage, and music relaxation may help people feel less anxious. Reducing the amount of caffeine ingested can also help. Some find that it helps to reduce the amount of non-food chewing performed during the day, including chewing gum and even pencils. The more non-food chewing that occurs, the more jaw clenching will occur, which tends to exacerbate bruxism. Retraining can also be beneficial to interrupt a grinding habit. If a patient thinks about jaw position and consciously corrects it, this can reduce tension. The correct position is with teeth slightly apart, lips closed lightly, and the tip of tongue resting behind the upper teeth. Retraining can take time and effort, but a dentist can assist with this process. People should consult a dentist if preventative measures are not effective for stopping this habit.