What is Bruxism, and Do You Have it?

According to the National Sleep Foundation, about 8% of adults have this, and more than a third of parents have reported symptoms in their children. So… what is it? It’s teeth grinding. Yep, bruxism is the fancy medical term for grinding your teeth in your sleep. So, how can you tell if you’re a nighttime teeth-grinder? Check out some of the symptoms below.


Symptoms can be as mild as a headache, or as severe as chipping a tooth. The most common symptoms we see are worn down teeth, headaches, ear aches, sensitive teeth, sore gums, sore jaws, and sore faces.

What causes bruxism?

The exact causes of grinding teeth during your sleep are unknown, but studies have linked it to stress, anxiety, alcohol consumption, caffeine, and even to sleep apnea.

Coping & Solutions for Teeth Grinding

There are ways you can cope with bruxism. Cut down on your daytime stress and spend some time relaxing during the 1-2 hours before bedtime. To reduce work stress, make sure you’re sleeping in a cool, dark room without the nearby glow from a computer or phone light.

Sleep deprivation can also contribute to exacerbated teeth grinding, so getting adequate sleep, drinking plenty of water, and including physical exercise in your routine can all help relieve symptoms.

If you are still experiencing symptoms, it’s probably time to make an appointment with your dentist to ask if a custom-fitted mouth guard is the right solution for solving your sleep bruxism problem.

Teeth grinding might be a common malady, but you shouldn’t have to suffer. At Scottsdale Dental Excellence, your North Scottsdale Dentist office, Dr. Jeffrey Clark and Dr. Joe Mehranfar are dedicated to providing you with the best possible care and results in the Phoenix area. With over 40 years of combined experience and knowledge, they can help you alleviate your bruxism symptoms and help you rediscover that elusive good night’s sleep

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