If you think that you’ve been grinding your teeth, you may be wondering what you can do to prevent it. Stress-related grinding is a serious issue, and can lead to premature tooth wear and TMJ, a painful condition of the jaw joint. So what can you do to prevent it? Here are a few top tips from McCue Dental Health in Wauwatosa.
1. Take Time To Rest And Relax Before Bed
It’s a good idea to relax before bed, and do things like take a warm shower, read a book, or do something else that relaxes and destresses you. You may want to avoid “screen time,” though, as the blue light from screens can disrupt your sleep cycle and contribute to anxiety.
2. Practice Good Sleep Hygiene
There are a number of ways to practice good “sleep hygiene” and get a better night of sleep, such as:
- Ensuring your room is dark enough at night
- Keeping your bedroom at a comfortable temperature (60-67 degrees Fahrenheit is often recommended)
- Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule
- Avoiding alcohol, caffeine, and large meals before bed
Getting better sleep can help with stress and anxiety, so it may also help you stop grinding your teeth.
3. Avoid Grinding During The Day
Pay attention to the position of your teeth throughout the day to avoid daytime grinding. One step you can take to prevent the teeth from contacting each other is positioning the tip of your tongue between your front teeth. If you grind less in the day, you may be less likely to grind your teeth at night, too.
4. Get More Exercise
Exercise helps with stress relief and also can help you get better-quality sleep, which may improve your overall mental health, decrease stress and anxiety, and reduce your risk of grinding.
5. Try Stress Reduction Techniques Like Meditation & Mindfulness
If you have trouble destressing after a long day, meditation or mindfulness may be a good option for you. Mindfulness and meditation programs have been clinically proven to help improve stress
6. Consider Getting Therapy For Stress & Anxiety
If you have a lot of issues with stress and anxiety, talk therapy with a therapist or psychologist may be useful for working through the sources of your stress, identifying them, and taking steps to address them.
Get Help With Teeth Grinding In Wauwatosa From Dr. Shaun McCue
If you grind your teeth at night, you could end up damaging your teeth or your jaw joints. But at McCue Dental Health, Dr. Shaun McCue can help. While the above tips may help you reduce grinding, the best way to keep your teeth healthy is to get a custom-fitted night guard.
Night guards fit over your upper teeth, and prevent direct tooth-to-tooth contact. This eliminates the risk of tooth damage from grinding, and can also help you grind less frequently.
So don’t wait, and don’t risk your oral health. If you think you’re grinding your teeth, come to see Dr. Shaun McCue in Wauwatosa right away. Contact us online or give us a call at (414) 456-1091 to get started.