Teeth Grinding: What Causes It and How to Treat It

cause of teeth grindingTeeth grinding is when you grind, gnash or clench your teeth either in your sleep or even when wide awake. It is basically a habit that turns into a problem that requires intervention.

The medical term for teeth grinding is “bruxism.” Many of us do it without even realizing it. In fact, a lot of people do it in their sleep, which is called sleep bruxism.

If you are waking up with a headache and a sore jaw, then there’s a possibility that you’re grinding your teeth.

The main reasons for teeth grinding include:

  • Stress
  • Not taking proper care of your teeth
  • Avoiding dental check-ups
  • Eating food that damages teeth

Many people tend to neglect this condition because they are unaware of its impact on dental health. There may not be a medical cure to this, but there are various ways to reduce and even eliminate teeth grinding completely.

Let’s have a look at some of the ways in which teeth grinding can be treated.

Reducing Stress

Stress is one of the most common reasons of falling prey to bruxism. You must take steps to reduce stress if you wish to reduce teeth grinding.

To deal with bruxism that results from stress, one needs to indulge in stress management activities and then re-examine the scenario to see if it helped reduce the grinding.

Stress levels can be reduced by taking care of simple things such as getting sufficient sleep or taking part in regular exercise like yoga.

Consuming Healthy Foods

Junk foods not only impact your oral health but can also cause you stress. As a result, eliminating – or at least minimizing – these foods can help alleviate the occurrence of bruxism.

Instead, munch on healthy fruits and vegetables which can have a very good effect on your health. In addition to this, you might concentrate on avoiding unhealthy foods, such as foods that are rich in sugars or that stick to your teeth.

Avoiding Caffeinated or Alcoholic Beverages

Drinks having caffeine such as coffee or chocolate shakes further increase your grinding habit and lead to more problems. Decrease the consumption of such drinks to reduce teeth grinding.

Exercising Before Going to Bed

There are exercises to help you reduce teeth grinding. It’s all about relaxing your jaws.

One simple exercise is to place a warm washcloth over your cheek and let it rest there. You can also have someone massage your neck and shoulders thoroughly to get you relaxed. You can even listen to music as a means of letting stress go and relaxing.

Seeing a Dentist For Teeth Grinding

Excessive teeth grinding can lead to cracked or broken teeth. Your dentist can diagnosis any issues, and offer solutions such as crowns or bridges to repair any damage that may have been done to your teeth.

If you are experiencing symptoms of teeth grinding or Bruxism, such as waking up with headaches, tooth or jaw pain, it’s time to see your dentist. With a general examination your dentist can diagnosis your problem and offer ways to help you to reduce or get rid of your habit of teeth grinding.

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Three Tips for Helping Your Little Ones Get Ready for the Dentist

child-visit-dentistIf your child, like most other children, are a little bit nervous about visiting the dentist, you’ve no doubt started to scratch your head to find ways to calm them down and get them over the nerves and jitters that they’ve been dealing with.

This can be a pretty tall task for any parent!

But according to Dr. Rafiq, a dentist in Woodhaven Michigan there are definitely some things that you can do to help your children overcome their fear of the dentist and even get them to start looking forward to these regular meetings to make sure that their smile is exactly where it needs to be.

Here are three tips and tricks to help you talk to your child about visiting the dentist in a way that makes things a lot easier for everyone involved.

Start visits to the dentist at a young age

The earlier that your child starts to visit the dentist, the less stress they are going to have simply because the process is going to become normal quite quickly.

A lot of the fear that children have when it comes to visiting the dentist is a fear of anticipation, getting nervous about things that haven’t even happened yet or aren’t likely to happen, either. By visiting the dentist frequently when they are young, and by looking through kid-friendly dentist information, they can set different expectations and they won’t worry about visiting the dentist later on in life.

Keep early visits simple, straightforward, and quick

It’s also really important that you and your dentist do absolutely everything in your power to make sure that the first few visits that your child makes to the dentist are relatively simple, very straightforward, and as quick (and painless) as humanly possible.

This deflates a lot of the nerves that kids feel about visiting the dentist, and again, it sets different expectations for your children moving forward.

Be open, upfront, and honest about the experiences they will have at the dentist

Children can get very overwhelmed when it comes to new and somewhat scary experiences, especially when a stranger in a laboratory coat is going to be poking and prodding their mouths!

By being upfront, open, and honest with your children about the experience they are going to have, and by answering all of their questions as best you can before and during the visit, you shouldn’t have any problem alleviating the anxiety and nervousness that your child would otherwise feel.

Common Dental Problems Resulting from Poor Oral Care

Many oral bacteria can breed inside your mouth. If these oral bacteria are left alone, they can cause viruses, gum diseases, tooth decay, and other common oral infections. Both adults and children can suffer from these ailments unless proper oral care is practiced.

Most of the infections caused by these oral bacteria can be prevented with proper oral hygiene. It is even easier to remedy the infection while one is still in childhood. If the ailment is severe, then one will need to go to a dentist and ask for advanced dental assistance.

If you know what oral ailments can occur with the bad bacteria, you will know how to prevent them. After all, you will know what caused the oral ailment. Here are some of the common dental ailments that come with poor oral care.

poor-oralDental caries. The dental caries is actually the primary result of tooth decay. It is also the most common dental infection known today. The dental caries is considered to be the leading cause for tooth loss in kids under the age of 12. It is the kind of oral infection that is caused by bad bacteria called Streptococcus mutans.

Gingivitis. Gingivitis is the medical term referring to early gum disease. Many types of bacteria cause the said oral infection. When the bacteria settle down in the crevices of the gums, they produce toxins afterward. The gums will then react to the produced toxins with swelling and inflammation. Sometimes, the gums will even bleed while you are brushing the teeth. Adults are usually the ones who are suffering from gingivitis. If this oral infection is left without any treatment, it will lead to periodontal disease.

Periodontal disease. This particular disease is one where gingivitis is spread below your gumline. It will then affect your bone along with the supporting tissue. There will be pockets forming around your teeth, which then give way to bone loss and inflammation. Due to the destruction of the bones, the teeth will loosen significantly. Periodontal disease is considered to be the most common cause of tooth loss.

Herpangina. The said oral disease commonly infects kids aged three to ten years old. It is common during the fall and summer seasons. The symptoms of herpangina include difficulty in swallowing, sore throat, and fever. It will then be followed by blisters behind the mouth. If these blisters rupture, they will become large ulcers. Herpangina lasts anywhere from three to five days.

Hand, foot, and mouth disease. School-aged kids are the ones who are highly likely to develop the said disease. The first symptoms would be fever and sore throat. After that, slightly painful blisters appear on the tongue and inside the cheek. The same symptoms will even show on the soles, buttocks, and palms. The infection will disappear within three days.

Canker sores. These are lesions forming on the gums and mouth tissues. It is a common ailment in adolescents and children. The canker sores are most likely caused by hormones, food hypersensitivities, immune problems, and stress.

These are just some of the common problems that arise with improper oral care. Others may include thrushes and oral herpes. Give your mouth proper oral care to avoid these oral ailments.

Oral Care Secrets that Can be Found at Home

home_tooth_whiteningMany manufacturing companies have tried hard to formulate wonder oral remedies that will cure, treat and prevent oral problems. In the wide array of tooth paste, mouthwash and all other laboratory based oral care ingredients; you will then discover that they all have their equivalent natural home remedies that you can choose from. There is nothing in using laboratory based oral care products; however, we should expect then that each of these have their corresponding side effects that might just contribute in damaging the normal flora of our mouth.

In order for us to unleash the secrets of several oral care ingredients that can be found at home; check out the following:

Make use of Green and Black Tea

– One of the major reasons why our mouth is suffering from bad breath is because of the sulphur content of the foods that we are eating. Several food ingredients such as garlic and onions possesses high amount of sulphur. These will not just contribute in giving you bad breath but are also considered as means of damaging your teeth. In order to combat such distraction, you can make use of green and/or black tea which is usually found at your home. Green and Black Tea are known to combat or minimize sulphur production, thus enhancing the smell of your mouth and will also strengthen your teeth from cavities.

Gobble up something

– Our saliva is not just there to moisturize our oral cavity. In fact, one of its major functions is to combat accumulation of bacterial build up which will help prevent bad breathe. There are times when we feel dehydrated, you will notice that we gradually develop bad breath; this is because the production of our saliva will be minimized. So, in order to promote better salivary production, you can gobble up something to eat such as celery, apples and carrots.

Eat plenty of pineapples

– Pineapples are commonly known to be fibre enriched which is known to enhance your metabolism, thus preventing constipation. What we do not know about this fruit is that it contains bromelain enzyme which is known to be a stain remover. So, eat up lots of pineapple now for the reason of not just to promote better metabolism but to also whiten up your teeth.

Combine up that baking soda with a hydrogen peroxide

– One of the most common natural home remedy is with the use of baking soda and hydrogen peroxide. Both ingredients acts as stain remover which will give you better effects when applied to the teeth.

Lessen up your cavities with the use of coconut oil

– We may be new to this, but coconut oil contains natural germ busting properties. What you have to do is to swish wash that coconut oil in your mouth for a couple of minutes and then spit. You can opt to rinse with water afterwards.

There are several home remedies that you can find readily accessible at your kitchen to help you out with your oral care problems. All you have to do is to be patient and be open to new suggestions when it comes to natural remedies for you to have a better, fresher and stronger oral care clean.

Top Remedies Commonly Used for Bad Breath

bad-breath2Bad breath is one of the embarrassing issues that actually hamper your social life. If you have bad breath, do not immediately panic. After all, you still have some ways to reverse that problem. You can improve the situation by consistently practicing good oral care habits. Here are some of the oral care habits that you should establish to be able to completely remedy bad breath.

First, you should brush your teeth regularly. By brushing your teeth regularly, you can remove the bacteria causing bad breath from the teeth and gums. It is highly recommended to brush the teeth at least two times a day. You might even want to bring a toothbrush at work since there are odors you can remove after a meal. The toothbrush should be the soft-bristle ones.

Do not overlook your tongue. Make sure that you brush your tongue as well since it can also harbor tiny food bits and plaque. When cleaning the tongue, brush it across to remove bacteria and food which causes bad breath. Some people have a coated tongue. If you are one of those people with a coated tongue, then you should consider using a tongue scraper.

Flossing your teeth at least once a day can also help you remove bad breath. By flossing, you should be able to get rid of the plaque hiding in between your teeth. By flossing, the tiny food particles trapped in between the teeth can be removed as well. Know that flossing is as essential to oral care as brushing your teeth.

If you are wearing dentures or retainers, you have to clean them as well. Keep them clean so that they do not harbor any bacteria that can cause bad breath. If you have a denture, remove it at night and brush it using dental cleansers. If you are using a retainer, then clean it thoroughly before you put it right back in your mouth.

There are beverages that you should avoid as they can cause bad breath. These beverages include alcoholic drinks like whiskey, wine, and bear as well as coffee. These beverages leave some residue behind. Moreover, the residue sticks to the plaques in the mouth.

You might want to be wary of odorous foods. There are many strong-tasting foods that leave odors in the mouth. It is especially true when you eat cheese, onions, hot peppers, and garlic. The scent will linger after a meal. If you can, you can try avoiding eating these food but since they are healthy food items, you can just look for ways to alleviate odor problems.

Natural breath fresheners are quite helpful too. There are spices and herbs that you can consider stocking up in your kitchen so that you can freshen up your breath. For example, there is parsley which contains the natural deodorizer chlorophyll. Mint tea will also improve your scent, especially after a meal.

Keep your mouth hydrated. If you have dry mouth, then that will definitely cause bad breath. Drink a lot of water – not soft drinks, alcohol, and coffee – so that you can prevent your mouth from drying. If you have a severe case of dry mouth, then you should consider looking for a dentist to prescribe an artificial saliva for you.