Millions of Americans grind their teeth. Many of them may not be aware of this behavior, as it often occurs unconsciously, such as when they are asleep.
Though you might not know that you grind your teeth, this behavior can still do a great deal of damage to your smile without intervention from a dental professional. Stewart Dental Group, a dental practice located in Charlotte, NC, lists three oral health concerns that can arise if you do not seek treatment for teeth grinding.
Your teeth are durable and experience a great deal of wear and tear on a daily basis. However, teeth grinding and clenching, a behavior known as bruxism, create an abnormally high amount of pressure that can cause structural damage to your teeth.
If bruxism continues, you could be left with chips, cracks, or fractures in your tooth. This could disrupt the appearance of your smile, but it may also leave your smile vulnerable to further dental harm, including oral infections. You may require extensive restorative or cosmetic dental work to repair this damage.
Decline of Jaw Function
The pressure from teeth grinding can also add stress to your jawbone. Over time, the jaw can grow tight or sore, and its function may decline into temporomandibular joint disorders, also known as TMJ.
This condition will worsen without intervention from a dental professional, and you may have trouble chewing or speaking. Your dentist will treat bruxism if this is the root cause of your TMJ.
Continued teeth grinding behavior can cause teeth to shift out of place over time. Your teeth may appear crooked, and overlapping or misaligned teeth may make it more difficult to keep your teeth clean.
If plaque cannot be effectively cleared from your teeth, you could have a greater risk of developing cavities or other dental problems. Grinding and clenching may also cause teeth to feel loose, and you might be in danger of tooth loss.
TMJ Treatment Available in Charlotte, NC
Stewart Dental Group offers treatment for TMJ and other dental issues to patients in Charlotte, NC. Our practice specializes in restorative, cosmetic, and general dentistry for patients of all ages, including both preventative and emergency dental care. To schedule a consultation with us, contact our staff online or reach our team by phone at 704.255.4256.