Dr. Kenneth Cho Dentistry
Do you frequently find yourself grinding your teeth? It’s very common to experience occasional grinding and clenching. For some people, however, chronic teeth grinding (bruxism) leads to symptoms like headaches, jaw soreness, and neck pain.
La Habra dentist Kenneth Cho DDS is committed to continually expanding his education so that we can provide you with the most updated treatments available. He understands that the causes for bruxism vary widely from person to person and will customize treatment to fit your unique needs. For many people, relief can be found with a simple, custom-made night guard called an NTI device.
What Is an NTI Device?
This tiny, clear, plastic device is customized to fit snugly over your front teeth. You wear the device while you sleep at night, making grinding virtually impossible. After a short time, chronic head and neck pain and other discomfort related to involuntary clenching and grinding usually begin to resolve and disappear.
What Causes Teeth Grinding?
In many cases, teeth grinding is caused by a misaligned dental bite. When your bite is out of balance, excess force is placed on one side of your mouth. When this occurs, you do not bite down evenly on all teeth, and your jaw needs to shift from its normal position to bring the rest of your teeth together.
This causes you to clench or grind your teeth on that side of your mouth and puts constant, unnatural force on the joint and surrounding muscles. This is why you experience head and neck pain.
Why Is Teeth Grinding a Problem?
Under normal circumstances, your teeth withstand an enormous amount of force when you chew. This isn’t usually a problem because healthy teeth are very strong and designed to absorb this stress. But constant intense teeth grinding is simply more than your teeth can handle.
Aside from its painful symptoms, the constant force placed on your teeth by grinding and clenching can lead to serious oral health problems, including:
Excessive, uneven wear on teeth
Fractured or chipped teeth
TMJ (temporomandibular joint disorder)
Addressing the problem with an FDA-approved NTI device is an easy and affordable way to prevent these problems from occurring. Without treatment, more costly and involved solutions, like dental crowns, may be necessary.