Did you know that dental professionals around the world have noticed a significant rise in teeth grinding since the start of the pandemic?
With increasing levels of unemployment (especially in Alberta), isolation and changes in our normal routines – impacts on mental health are unavoidable. It is no wonder that we are seeing our patients clenching and grinding more, and experiencing sore jaw muscles and headaches. This has in turn lead to an increase in tooth sensitivity, wear, and broken/cracked teeth.
Did you know that when a person clenches/grinds at night, they can exert a force of over 800 lbs per square inch on their teeth? It is no wonder they break!
So… What can you do about it?
If you think you may be clenching or grinding more, consider having a night guard made. The newer night guards aren’t near as bulky as they used to be, and most patients find them quite comfortable. These guards will help protect your teeth, relieve tooth sensitivity, as well as help with muscle soreness and headaches.
How do Night Guards work?
Professional night guards (not boil and bite!) are made to be completely flat, and so that all of your teeth contact evenly. This helps relax the muscles and even stretch them a bit because of the increased separation of your teeth. They may not stop you from clenching or grinding, but they protect your teeth by minimizing the force you exert on them while sleeping, and eliminating any friction which causes tooth wear.
We hope you found this helpful, please leave a question or comment below!