Today's Dental of Boxborough

Teeth Grinding: Causes and Preventative Care Steps

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 25, 2018
Oyster Point Dentistry - Dental Implants in Newport News, VA

Whether you're stressed or just anxious, teeth grinding, also known as bruxism , comes in many shapes and forms. And while the occasional grinding doesn't hurt and is quite common, constant grinding can wear down your health in more ways than one.

The worst part of the condition is that it can be difficult to know whether or not you're affected. Why? Because most grinding occurs during rest, meaning that while there are symptoms of a dental issue, it is not immediately apparent what the cause is.

By understanding the causes of and preventative care for bruxism, you can find relief from the condition and ensure that both your teeth and your general health are as vibrant as possible.

What is Bruxism?

Put simply, bruxism is a condition characterized by the clenching and grinding teeth. Most often, the condition affects individuals at night in a condition specified as sleep bruxism, however it can also occur during the day.

For many, the condition goes unnoticed but when symptoms begin to surface, the issue becomes more obvious. Symptoms may include:

  • Teeth grinding or clenching, which is often loud enough to wake others
  • Flattened, fractured, chipped or loose teeth
  • Increased sensitivity of the teeth
  • Soreness or tightness in the jaw or face
  • A dull headache or earache
  • Ringing in the ears known as tinnitus

Why Does Bruxism Occur?

Bruxism is a quite mysterious. In fact, many health professionals find it incredibly difficult to identify a specific cause for the condition.

However, several psychological and physical causes have come to the forefront:

Emotions – Anxiety, stress, anger, or frustration, can trigger bruxism.

Coping or Focus Strategy – Some clench or grind teeth to alleviate pressure or help them focus. While this often occurs during the daytime, individuals may still be unaware that they're doing it.

Oral Structure – Individuals with poor teeth alignment, also known as malocclusion, may develop bruxism.

leep Conditions – Individuals with sleep apnea may also experience bruxism as part of their condition.

Other Medical Complications – Grinding can also be caused by specific psychiatric medications, complications from other medical disorders, and even acid reflux.

There Are Three Major Treatment Options You Can Turn to for Relief

If you suffer from bruxism, there's no need to fret. Some individuals actually grow out of the disorder, whereas others suffer such minimal disruption that no treatment is required.

But if you must seek treatment, rest assured that you have options:

Dental Approaches – A visit to your dentist can give you access to splints and mouth guards to prevent damage to your teeth. Of course, you can also consult your dentist to determine if misalignment is causing your problems and, if it is, you can determine an appropriate treatment solution.

Therapies – For bruxism due to psychological factors, stress management, behavior therapy, and/or biofeedback may help address the underlying cause and eliminate teeth grinding in the process.

Medications – Medications aren't a common treatment for bruxism but in some extreme cases, doctors will prescribe muscle relaxants or Botox injections to relax the muscles and prevent grinding.

As a disorder that manifests most commonly during sleep, it can be incredibly difficult to recognize what is causing your discomfort or dental complications.

By better understanding the symptoms, causes, and treatments of bruxism, you can ensure that you find the relief you need, protect your smile from damage, and rest easy knowing that grinding isn't wearing down your health. For more information, contact Today's Dental.

lh360.com


Dental Implants: What you Need to Know

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Today’s Dental of BoxboroughDental implants are a good long-term solution to replacing lost teeth. Patients need to consider their options and make educated decisions when they are deciding between bridges and implants.

1. An implant beats bridges or dentures

Bridges, dentures, and implants replace missing teeth.

A bridge requires filing two adjoining teeth, which can make them weaker and prone to decay. Dentures often have fit problems and can interfere with taste. For an implant, a titanium screw is placed in the jawbone and a prosthetic tooth is attached. A proper implant has no physical downsides and has good longevity.

2. Implants are more expensive generally.

One of the biggest ‘problems’ patients see with implants is the cost. Implants are rarely covered by insurance. But when considering cost you need to consider value. Implants are a permanent, long-term solution that exactly matches your existing teeth. Implants are for the rest of your life, and can replicate your teeth in appearance and functionality.

If you need an implant near a nerve or sinus cavity, it's worth paying for a dentist who has specialized training.

3. Not all implants are equal

Most dentists use implants made by the original Swedish manufacturer; studies have found that these implants have high success rates (90% or more).

There are also some newer, generic implants that are cheaper but may not have been studied yet. So ask your doctor what kind of implant he uses and the success rate he's had with it.

4. Timing can also help

Implants are usually a two-part process -- first putting in the implant, then covering it with a crown six to 12 weeks later.

If you know you need one, schedule the initial procedure at the end of a calendar year, then have the crown put on in the following year. That way you can use two years' worth of your pretax flexible spending account at work to pay a chunk of the cost. You'll reap as much as 30% savings if you're in a high tax bracket.

For information on dental implants, contact Today's Dental.

Excerpts – CNN.com


Your Smile is Your Best Asset

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 11, 2018
Today's Dental of Boxborough, MA

The first thing people notice about you is your smile. Nothing is as noticeable as a beautiful set of teeth. White smile are more attractive and they present a more healthy appearance. If you have not been born with a perfect smile, you can get one fairly easily.

It has never been easier to get that beautiful smile, from teeth whitening to dental veneers to one day dental crowns, you can get that smile with minimal dental visits.

In office teeth-whitening gives you results that are not available over the counter. They are also safer and more effective than over the counter whitening products. In office whitening also protects your gums from ill-fitting trays and bleaching agents. Gums are very sensitive, and using an poorly fitting whitening tray is asking for gum trouble. A dentist will give you custom-made whitening trays which reduces the contact of the solution and your gums.

Dental veneers are thin pieces of porcelain that are adhered to your teeth. Veneers can give your teeth the appearance of being larger or brighter, they can also cover uneven, discolored or chipped teeth.

Whatever dental procedure you choose to improve your smile, be sure you talk to your dentist and choose the procedure that is an effective, long lasting and a healthy option for your mouth. Contact Today's Dental.


Back-to-School Dental Tips for Kids

Joseph Coupal - Tuesday, September 04, 2018
Today's Dental of Boxborough, MA

Your child may have the latest wardrobe, school supplies and sports equipment for the new school year, but does she have a healthy mouth and the tools they need to maintain it?

A dental examination for kids is as important as immunizations and booster shots and should be a regular part of back-to-school preparations. Tooth decay affects U.S. children more than any other chronic infectious disease and 19 percent of children ages 2 to 19 years old have untreated tooth decay. Dental pain or disease can lead to difficulty in eating, speaking, playing and learning as well as millions of hours of missed school.

Your child's back-to-school checklist should include:

Regular dental examinations to diagnose and treat or prevent dental problems. Parents and teachers may not realize there's a dental problem, so regular checkups are important. Your dentist may suggest fluoride treatments or dental sealants to prevent decay and can diagnose and treat dental problems to save your child pain and lost school time. Regular brushing with fluoride toothpaste and flossing. head for the dental care aisle when you're out shopping for notebooks, binders and pencils. If parents buy several toothbrushes they could have their child change to a new one every three months or so, or after an illness. If it's hard to remember when to change a brush, you could try to change it every time report cards come out. Ask your dentist for a recommendation on how often to change toothbrushes.

Eating healthy lunches and snacks. Include portable healthy lunch items and snacks in your child's sack lunch, including grains, milk, cheese, raw vegetables, yogurt or fruit. If your child eats in the school cafeteria, review healthy, balanced food choices with him before the first day of school. Cut back on sugary foods and soft drinks.

Wearing a properly fitted mouthguard while participating in organized sports, PE classes or playground activities.

For more information on your child's dental health contact Today's Dental.

Source: colgate.com