At Dr. Jeff Velasquez's Long Beach, CA cosmetic dentistry, we don't consider stress
as the main cause of grinding and clenching, although grinding might be more pronounced or elevated during stressful times in a persons' life. We've seen happy and healthy kids who grind their teeth away. But there are many factors that trigger a person to grind their teeth. Blaming the patient for being too stressed out, telling them to reduce their stressed levels and asking them to take stress relieving therapy won't really help their bruxism. They've been told all their lives to relax. It didn't help.
Grinding is a habit developed and reinforced over the years. The one who does it is not even aware of the habit. Muscles in the jaw are programmed and activated to cause the destructive movements, according to leading experts.
Years of bruxism will cause wear of dentition like our patient above. The damage also includes loose teeth, fractured teeth, muscle pain and headaches in the morning when a person wakes up. Consult with a Cosmetic Dentist for treatments using dental appliances like deprogramming splints and occlusal guards. And also consult with a Cosmetic Dentist to restore worn teeth or damage teeth.
One way to deprogram the habit of grinding according to experts is to keep tongue between the teeth during swallowing. It prevents activation of jaw muscles. Try multiple repetitions, a few times a day.
1. Rest: tongue between teeth
2. Swallow: teeth apart, still tongue between teeth
3. Rest again: teeth stay apart.
Jeff Velasquez, DDS
(severe bruxism, cosmetic dentistry)
Dr. Jeff D. Velasquez