Tooth Grinding (Bruxing)

At SmileMore Dental Care, we create custom devices to prevent damage caused by tooth grinding or clenching.

Tooth Grinding Damages Teeth

Teeth grinding and jaw clenching are common, affecting up to one-third of adults during the day and about one out of ten in their sleep.

Grinding or clenching your teeth creates oral health issues over time. The repeated action can flatten, fracture, or chip teeth or wear down tooth enamel, exposing deeper layers of the tooth. Most cases of tooth grinding require treatment to prevent further damage and address oral health issues brought on by grinding. Mild tooth grinding may not require treatment, but it’s best to get a dental professional’s opinion.

Symptoms of Tooth Grinding

Tooth grinding happens to some patients throughout the day when they’re awake but may also affect others while they sleep. Patients who grind their teeth throughout the night may be unaware of this habit until their dentist points it out during a checkup. Evidence of tooth grinding may include:

Michigan/Tanner Nightguard

The team at SmileMore Dental Care does our research to find the best dental appliances for each oral health issue. When our patients are prone to grinding their teeth, we’ll often suggest a Michigan splint. This device protects your teeth from the effects of bruxism and potential stress fractures over time.

A Michigan splint is a mouthguard that covers your upper or lower teeth. We recommend this appliance because it’s made from thick material that withstands and prevents the damage caused by tooth grinding. 

Michigan splint mouthguards are bespoke appliances made just for you. We use our in-house technology to scan your teeth and use this digital rendering to create your custom mouthguard. The combination of high-resolution scans and carbon printing ensures the mouthguard fits perfectly around your teeth.

Grinding from Stress or Anxiety?

Tooth grinding or clenching is the result of some of the strongest muscles in your body tensing up (6 to 20 more times than non-sufferers!). The cause of tooth grinding is unique to each patient.

During waking hours, tooth grinding may be an emotional response, coping strategy, or habit. It can be attributed to anxiety, stress, anger, or tension. Nighttime grinding can be related to hyperactivity or sleep issues like sleep apnea or acid reflux. Young children commonly grind their teeth but it disappears by the time they reach adulthood. Tooth grinding also tends to run in families; if you grind your teeth, it’s likely that other members of your family do the same. There are other reasons people grind their teeth, too. It may be due to a competitive or hyperactive personality type or it can be the result of a health disorder, such as dementia or epilepsy.