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Orthodontics Blog

Waking Up Angry and in Pain? It May Not Be Your Fault!

It’s estimated that over 60 million Americans grind their teeth each night. Bruxism is a condition categorized by grinding, gnashing or clenching your teeth.

You are more susceptible to engage in grinding or clenching your teeth at night while you sleep and are completely unaware you’re even doing it. This is known as sleep bruxism. This can be considered a type of sleep-related disorder and is usually accompanied by other sleep disorders such as snoring.

Take a Bite out of Bruxism

Those who may suffer from some form of Bruxism often wake up with jaw pain and/or headaches.

There have been reported extreme cases that involve damaged teeth. Usually until symptoms become more evident, most people are unaware that they’re even grinding their teeth as they sleep.


There are a few common signs of bruxism which include:

  • jaw or facial pain
  • tight jaw muscles
  • dull headaches – mostly around your temple area
  • tooth sensitivity
  • and in extreme cases, fractured, chipped or even loose teeth

Though there isn’t a known cause that causes bruxism, it’s been thought to be associated with physical or psychological causes.

Here are a few things that can trigger bruxism:

  • stress, anger, tension and anxiety
  • sleep apnea conditions
  • aggressive or hyperactive personality types
  • toothaches or earaches

Stress, age, smoking and drinking are also things that can increase your risk of bruxism.

Don’t Wait!

If you think you’re suffering from any of the signs we listed above, don’t wait to contact your dental provider. Putting it off can lead to bigger problems down the road.

It’s a great idea to write down possible conditions that could be causing your bruxism to discuss with your doctor, as well as any questions you may have.

Your dentist will most likely examine your oral health for signs of bruxism, which may include X-rays. From there a corrective treatment plan can be discussed and hopefully it’s a simple fix such as wearing a mouthguard at night to preserve your teeth!

For a beautiful smile!

Cater Galante Orthodontic Specialists

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