Stressful life events, anxiety, depression, sleep disorders, genetic factors, smoking, alcohol, caffeine and some prescription and recreational drugs have been linked as contributing factors for bruxism.
Signs you maybe grinding/clenching include:
- Abnormal tooth wear
- Chipped or fractured teeth or fillings
- Joint pain or tenderness
- Neck and shoulder tightness
- Jaw muscle discomfort/tension, earaches, facial pain.
An occlusal splint or “night guard” may be recommended to provide a barrier between the grinding surfaces of the teeth to protect against further wear and damage. Depending on your case your dentist may also refer you to a physiotherapist, give you specific exercises or recommend other types of treatment such as muscle relaxants.