There is nothing worse than having a poor night’s sleep. Not only are you cranky the next day, but your body doesn’t feel right until you have another snooze to make up for it the lost time. Unfortunately for some, chronic sleep issues continue to keep their nights sleepless. They may develop a snoring habit or a teeth-grinding habit called bruxism.
The good news is that there are plenty of ways to curb this dental habit. But first, it’s important to find out why you’ve begun to grind your teeth. If stress is causing you to grind your teeth, ask your doctor or dentist about options to reduce your stress. Attending stress counseling, starting an exercise program, seeing a physical therapist or obtaining a prescription for muscle relaxants are among some of the options that may be offered. If necessary, your dentist can fit you with a mouth guard to protect your teeth from grinding during sleep.
Other tips to help you stop teeth grinding include:
- Avoid or cut back on foods and drinks that contain caffeine, such as colas, chocolate, and coffee.
- Avoid alcohol. Grinding tends to intensify after alcohol consumption.
- Do not chew on pencils or pens or anything that is not food. Avoid chewing gum as it allows your jaw muscles to get more used to clenching and makes you more likely to grind your teeth.
- Train yourself not to clench or grind your teeth. If you notice that you clench or grind during the day, position the tip of your tongue between your teeth. This practice trains your jaw muscles to relax.
- Relax your jaw muscles at night by holding a warm washcloth against your cheek in front of your earlobe.
Dr. Clarence Kegler II proudly serves Suwanee and all surrounding areas.