The Bruxism/TMJ Connection
Preventive dentistry isn’t just about fighting back harmful oral bacteria; it’s also about ensuring certain bite problems don’t develop or grow worse and threaten your long-term oral health. Bruxism and TMJ disorder are two common bite conditions that we carefully check for during your dental exam and cleaning appointment. Bruxism, or chronic teeth-grinding, can produce excessive wear on your teeth’s chewing surfaces, making them weak and susceptible to cracks and fractures. Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, a dysfunction in your jaw’s joints, can also develop as a result of the excessive pressure on your jaw.
Custom-Designed Oral Appliances
In many cases, bruxism and TMJ disorder can be addressed with the help of a custom-designed oral appliance, sometimes referred to as a bite guard. The appliance is similar to a mouthguard worn for sports, but is much smaller, more comfortable, and tailored to help your bite rest more comfortably. The appliance will help stop your teeth from grinding against each other, preventing them from becoming worn down and weakened. If you have trouble with your TMJs, then your appliance can also help the joints heal by supporting your jaw in a more comfortable position as you sleep. This can alleviate the stress on the joints and help them over time, as well as help you stop chronically grinding your teeth.
Sleep Apnea Appliances
In addition to the potential threat to your oral health, conditions such as bruxism may sometimes indicate the presence of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). The sleep disorder characteristically stops you from breathing while you sleep as oral tissues collapse into your airway. Marked by periods of increasingly louder snoring, sleep apnea can deprive you of deep sleep by constantly interrupting your breathing and sleeping cycle. If you exhibit signs of the disorder, we can refer you a trusted sleep expert for a comprehensive test and diagnosis. Then, we may be able to help you address your condition with a custom-designed sleep apnea appliance.
Fix Your Bite with a Custom Oral Appliance
Your bite’s function plays a significant role in your oral health, which makes treating bruxism and TMJ disorder immediately even more important. For more information, schedule a visit with us by calling Cederberg Dental in Dallas, TX, today at 214-348-7090. We also proudly serve patients who live in Lake Highlands, Plano, Rockwall, Carrollton, Grand Prairie, and all surrounding communities.