Grinding teeth, medically known as bruxism, is a common problem. Sleep bruxism often occurs at night when one is asleep. It can cause headaches and earaches. It is usually associated with stress and anxiety, abnormal bite and missing or crooked teeth. Disturbed sleep patterns and other sleep disorders like obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA), snoring, moderate daytime sleepiness, and insomnia may also be related to sleep bruxism, resulting in poor concentration throughout the day.
When teeth grinding happens regularly, it can wear down tooth enamel, chip teeth, and cause jaw pain and jaw joint disorders (chronic case).
Symptoms of teeth grinding
•Temple or cheek pain
• Ear pain
• Sore jaw muscles
• Jaw popping or clicking
• Locking of jaw
• Difficulty in opening mouth fully
• Frequent headaches as well as neck aches
In some cases, mouth guard can be fitted by dentist to prevent teeth grinding.
In the case where sleep apnoea is related to sleep bruxism, treating sleep apnoea can alleviate sleep bruxism. For sleep disturbance and jaw joint problems, consult our ENT specialist Dr YT Pang at CENTAS for diagnosis and treatment.