Dr. Baruch Tetri

Bruxism

Board-certified periodontist
September 16, 2022
Did a family member tell you that you regularly grind your teeth in your sleep? It is bruxism, a rare disease that occurs in 1–3% of the world's population. Lack of treatment leads to serious problems not only with the teeth health but also to problems with the whole body.

What is bruxism (teeth grinding)?

teeth grinding
Bruxism is uncontrollable/episodic contractions of the masticatory muscles, accompanied by strong jaw clenching and teeth grinding. Various reasons can underlie the disease, including their combinations. Diagnosis and treatment require a multidisciplinary approach.
teeth grinding

Symptoms

Let us remind you that bruxism is involuntary jaw clenching, which occurs more often in sleep. That's why it is impossible to notice it by yourself. As a rule, relatives hear teeth clicking or grinding and talk about it.
Still, there are indirect signs of bruxism, which include:
Morning headaches/migraines
Clicking at mouth opening/closing
Ear pain/ringing
Daytime drowsiness
Enamel wear/tear and increased sensitivity
Fast wear and tear of fillings or crowns
Numbness in the neck muscles.
If you notice one of these signs, be sure to see a doctor. The earlier the cause of teeth grinding is diagnosed, the fewer complications will need to be addressed during treatment!

Types of bruxism

Ankylosis

A semi-arbitrary teeth clenching due to stress or anxiety.

Nighttime

Involuntary movements of the lower jaw. Some are accompanied by night snoring and apnea (respiratory failure).
bruxism
According to the type of jaw movements, bruxism is divided into:
1
Grinding (lateral/transverse movement)
2
Clenching (anterior/posterior movement)
3
Clicking

Reasons

Dental

A number of clinical studies have confirmed that the development of bruxism is influenced by occlusal disharmony associated with:
Partial adentia
Incorrect bite
Irregular pathological dental abrasion
Fillings, crowns, or bridges of irregular anatomic shape
TMJ problems
When you have a bite disorder, your jaws can't find a resting point. The facial muscles try to adapt (find a comfortable position) to the pathological jaw clenching, leading to their involuntary movements.
This is interesting!

It is scientifically proven that bruxism can be inherited.

Psychological

The perception of any situation as stressful, constant anxiety, or nervous stress contribute to unconscious contraction of the facial muscles, leading to teeth grinding. Bruxism is thought to be a somatic platform for releasing stress outward. Uncontrollable spasms of the masticatory muscles are a manifestation, so to speak, of the body's psychological release.

Neurological

Uncontrolled teeth grinding can be caused by a disorder of the central or peripheral nervous system. Bruxism is often associated with snoring, sleep apnea, epilepsy, and other neurological pathologies. Effective treatment of these conditions helps to reduce the symptoms.
Dr. Tetri
"Bruxism is a complex pathology with a wide list of causes and consequences. But I know how to help get rid of this pathology. My skills in orthopedics, periodontics, gneuromuscular dentistry, and implantology allow me to provide an in-depth diagnosis, finding the causes of disease development, and offer a smart treatment—you will forget about teeth grinding and enjoy a beautiful, healthy smile.

I was trained by Dr. Clayton Chan—the founder of Occlusion Connections in Las Vegas and the world's leading expert in occlusion and temporomandibular joints. Schedule an appointment with me and put your health in good hands!"

Risk factors

Predisposing factors to the bruxism development include:
Regular use of antidepressants/neuroleptics—teeth grinding can be a side effect
Smoking or alcohol
Caffeine abuse
Chronic anxiety
Parkinson's disease.

Diagnosis

We perform multilevel diagnostics: physiological, gnathological, and neuromuscular.
CMS
EMG
ESG
We perform a computerized three-dimensional scan of the mandibular trajectories. It allows us to determine the place of central occlusion—the correct relationship between the teeth of the upper and lower jaws.
Electrosensors take real-time data from eight locations of facial muscle projections, both at rest and during work. The obtained data help to identify the smallest deviations (up to 20 microns) of the facial muscles position from the correct occlusion.
High-sensitivity microphones are placed in the temporomandibular joint area to record noise/vibration at mouth opening and closing with maximum amplitude. A computer program analyzes the results and identifies abnormalities in TMJ movements.

Treatment of nocturnal bruxism: How GNM can help

GNM = G (Gnathologics) + NM (Neuromuscular). Includes skillful clinical application of gnathology, orthopedics, and orthodontics.
Bruxism should be treated not just by a neurologist, orthodontist, or orthopedist, but by a doctor with knowledge of gnathology and gneuromuscular dentistry. It is impossible to restore the correct interaction of the lower jaw with the central and autonomic nervous systems without GNM skills.
Patient 12
Description:
The patient's crowns often cracked and had to be replaced all the time. He also suffered from frequent headaches and stiffness in the neck movement. After being diagnosed according to GNM standards, Dr. Tetri identified bruxism.

Solution:
Dr. Tetri performed a full mouth reconstruction on both jaws. Zirconia crowns with ceramic laminate were placed. The correct symmetry of the face was restored. The smile became wider, more beautiful. The correct bite returned; bruxism was eliminated.

How to alleviate bruxism before treatment

Give up smoking, alcohol, and coffee.
Take magnesium and calcium supplements to reduce facial muscle cramping.
Learn to control anxiety and relax (listen to music, walk, exercise).
Practice good, healthy sleep (without medication).
Wear mouth guards at night to protect your teeth from injury during unconscious grinding.

Complications

Complications
Constant abnormal overloading of the teeth and jaw muscles without treatment leads to serious problems:

  • Increased tooth abrasion. The crown part of the tooth breaks down—first the enamel, then the dentin. The pulp may become exposed. There may be increased teeth sensitivity to irritants, accelerated development of tooth decay, and cracks/chips.
  • Periodontitis. Periodontitis develops against constant trauma of periodontium. Teeth become loose and can fall out.
  • TMJ dysfunction. TMJ dysfunction is accompanied by pain in the jaw and neck and hypertrophy of the masticatory muscles. It hurts the patient to chew and talk.
  • Cervical arthrosis. The spine is often involved, and postural changes may occur.
  • Hypertrophy of facial muscles. Constant overexertion of the masticatory muscles leads to their deformation. The face aesthetics change; it takes on an abnormal, asymmetric shape.

Come to Tetri's Smile. We not only treat the effects of bruxism—we restore the correct bite, return the temporomandibular joint to the correct position, and "teach" the facial muscles to work normally again!
Complications