Bruxism or teeth grinding affects many people. People may grind their teeth consciously during the day, but it is a larger problem while you are sleeping. Grinding your teeth can damage enamel, wear down teeth, cause jaw pain, or irritate your gums. The noise from teeth grinding can also disturb your spouse’s sleep.
If you grind your teeth, a night guard should be considered. A night guard is very similar to a mouth guard worn by athletes, and serves as a barrier between your top and bottom teeth while you sleep. All night guards are custom-fit for comfort, and to allow for proper breathing. The dentist will take an impression of your teeth and have the night guard created by a dental lab. Night guards are very durable and can be used for as many as 10 years.
There are other things a person can do to try to stop teeth grinding. Try to train your jaw to be free and easy rather than clenched. Try to refrain from chewing gum or on objects such as pens. Try to avoid alcoholic drinks and drinks with caffeine. Caffeine will increase the likelihood that a person will grind their teeth.