Now accepting Telehealth appointments. Schedule a virtual visit.

All About Bruxism: Warning Signs, Complications, and Treatment Solutions

All About Bruxism: Warning Signs, Complications, and Treatment Solutions

Teeth grinding may not seem like a serious issue. In fact, you can even do it in your sleep without knowing. But, if you engage in this habit regularly, you could have a condition known as bruxism. 

Our team checks each of our patients for signs of bruxism during general exams at The Dental Touch in Oakland, California. We also offer treatment options to help you avoid any complications down the road.

Here’s what you should know about bruxism and why you shouldn’t ignore it.

Bruxism basics

It’s completely normal to clench or grind your teeth in moments of high emotion. However, when it occurs frequently, it’s a condition known as bruxism. And it can occur while you’re awake or asleep.

People of all ages can experience bruxism, including children. But certain things can increase your risk of this condition, such as:


Certain health conditions can also cause bruxism, like gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD), sleep apnea, dementia, and Parkinson’s disease.

Unfortunately, persistently clenching or grinding your teeth can lead to a variety of issues.

Bruxism complications

Without treatment, bruxism can take a toll on everything from your teeth and jaw muscles to the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) that connect your skull and jawbone. That’s because your teeth and jaw can deliver up to 250 pounds of force, even while you sleep.

Common bruxism-related problems include:


Since it’s possible to grind your teeth and not know it, our team looks for these signs of a problem during every dental exam. However, there are also symptoms you can watch for on your own.

Signs of bruxism

In addition to the dental signs of bruxism, you can experience symptoms that offer clues to this problem. For example, a person can clench or grind their teeth so loudly that someone else can hear it — even waking them up during sleep.

Other signs of bruxism include:

Do any of these symptoms sound familiar? It’s time to talk to your dentist.

Treatment for bruxism

Fortunately, there are ways to address bruxism once you know you have a problem. 

In many cases, even making lifestyle changes like quitting smoking, reducing your caffeine intake, and limiting alcohol can offer dramatic results. You can even improve bruxism symptoms by practicing stress management techniques — like meditation and warm baths before bed — or changing your sleeping position.

However, we could also recommend a customized oral device as protection from nighttime grinding. 

After performing an oral exam, we can help you find the perfect treatment strategy based on your symptoms and oral health.

Do you grind your teeth? Contact The Dental Touch in Oakland, California, to schedule an assessment today.

You Might Also Enjoy...

5 Simple Tips to Protect Your Dental Implants

Getting dental implants may be more involved than other tooth restoration options, but it’s a permanent solution that can last for decades. However, you still have to take good care of them. Here are five ways to help your implants last a lifetime.

I Have Dental Anxiety — What Can You Do to Help Me?

Did you know that fear and anxiety often keep people from seeing the dentist? If this sounds familiar, we’ve got good news — you don’t have to let these powerful feelings stand in the way of your dental care. Keep reading to learn more.

4 Warning Signs You May Need a Root Canal

Root canals are a common dental procedure. But what are they exactly, and how do you know you need one? Keep reading to spot the signs of a dental problem and how this treatment can help.