The Daily Grind: Stress and Your Dental Health

Mississauga Dental Implant Maintenance Grinding TeethWhether you agree that life is more stressful today than ever, dentists and periodontists in Mississauga are linking the increased cases of teeth-grinding (also known as bruxism), in large part, to stress. Let me tell you that I couldn’t agree more… especially as I write this next to my sleeping husband, a known tooth-grinder.

With a high-stress job as a police officer, I can tell how much stress he’s under at work as soon as he dozes off. While this obviously isn’t a scientific point-of-view, I do believe there is a correlation that shouldn’t be ignored, and most periodontists in Mississauga agree.

“Research suggests that one in 10 of us will grind our teeth, either in our sleep or while awake,” says Dr. Quyen Su, Periodontist at Periodontal Associates in Mississauga. “Typically, we see adults displaying damage from teeth-grinding; however more teens are visiting our clinic showing the typical wear and tear common from bruxism. With the pressures of exams and demands of school and social media, we expect that we’ll continue to see this number rise.”

Impact of Bruxism (grinding teeth) on Mississauga Periodontal Patients

The biting force of an adult human can equal up to 200 pounds per square inch and when you clench or grind your teeth on a regular basis that prolonged pressure takes its toll not only on your teeth and mouth structure, but on your muscles, tendons, ligaments and joints of the jaw, skull, neck and shoulders.

While bruxism (grinding teeth) is generally quite mild and known to disturb your sleep, the impact on your dental health is where our team of expert periodontists focus. The habit can wear down your enamel, cause increased tooth sensitivity, result in chipped or broken teeth and, in severe cases, cause misalignment to the jaw and mouth structure, all of which require the best periodontal care in Mississauga.

How Periodontists Treat Tooth Damage from Grinding Teeth

In most cases a mouth guard can help alleviate the pressure from grinding, however in some cases a dental bite adjustment may be required. Bite adjustment treatments help restore normal function by:

  • Reshaping the biting surfaces of the teeth and eliminating spots of excessive pressures where the teeth are brought into contact. This is done by carefully dividing bite pressures evenly across all of the teeth
  • Reconstructing badly worn and damaged teeth
  • Introducing bite splint therapy using a custom-fitted and adjusted plastic bite guard to keep the teeth apart, day, night, or both
  • Replacing old, worn out, or damaged fillings

In many cases patients aren’t even aware that they grind their teeth, doing it subconsciously. If you are under any additional stress, wake up with a popping or pain in your teeth or jaw joint, experience unexplained toothaches, or notice cracks and chips in your tooth, visit our periodontal team as soon as possible. Taking early precautions can help you avoid extreme damage down the line.

As experts in periodontal treatments, specializing in dental implants, gum recession, crown lengthening, bone grafting and more, we’d love to help you address your dental and smile concerns. Call us at 1-800-341-7471 or connect via email at [email protected]. Until then… keep smiling! We are located in Mississauga near Square One.

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