tooth grinding dental treatment edinburgh

Tooth Grinding & Clenching

If you wake in the morning with headache, aching jaw joints, sensitive sore teeth you could be a sleep bruxist- that’s someone who grinds and clenches their teeth in the night. People who grind and clench their teeth are determined – look at Andy Murray.

Many people grind and clench their teeth during the day as a response to stress, and there’s plenty of that about. Sometimes the muscles feel very tight over the jaw joints and teeth feel painful and supersensitive during stressful periods. This is quite a normal way to deal with stress. Recognising it’s happening can help along with massage of the muscles with some gentle stretching, which you can do yourself.  It could be an idea to get a splint to wear from your dentist for these stressful times. Other methods of dealing with stress can help, relaxation, hypnotherapy, or changing your job!

For those who are having a worse time with this problem, with pain happening often, headaches, even migraines, a splint can help. We can make a soft splint which can be useful to spread the load over the teeth. The trouble with these splints is that sometimes they make people clench and grind even more- the brain gets a signal something extra is there to bite extra hard onto, so it gets going! In these circumstances, we would recommend a little splint called a Sleep Clenching Inhibitor. This fits over the front teeth only and stops the back teeth coming together at all. This switches off the signals to the brain to clench and grind which then lets the muscles relax all night long. Many patients find these splints make a huge difference to their lives. They also protect teeth from splitting and sometimes even becoming loose with the continual dynamic forces that are working on them.

Some people are hardwired to clench their teeth all night long. Dentists can tell  by the shape of the jaw muscles- they are getting a good work out and they become highly developed. (That means they are even stronger and can  put even more force on the teeth). Usually there are lots of worn and chipped teeth too. Nothing can stop these people clenching and grinding, so the important thing is to protect the teeth. A Sleep Clenching Inhibitor can help here too.

At Stafford Street Dental Care, we have made hundreds of Sleep Clenching Inhibitors for many happy patients. Please do not hesitate to contact us  or telephone 01312257576.


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