Teeth grinding, also known as Bruxism, is a common sign of a TMJ related disorder. Patients who grind their teeth or clench their jaw are often unaware that they are doing so until complex dental concerns begin to develop. Often the underlying cause of frequent headaches, jaw pain and neck pain, teeth grinding can also cause tooth wear and damage.
Dr. Sousa completed a post-graduate residency in Cranio Mandibular Disorders at NYU and began his career as a dentist working for one an associate in one of the best known and respected TMJ specialty practices in the world. He has the training and experience to provide accurate diagnosis and comprehensive treatment for teeth grinding. He will thoroughly evaluate the fit and function of the entire occlusal system to identify the underlying problem and recommend appropriate treatment options.
Teeth Grinding Night Guard
The most conservative approach to treating teeth grinding is the use of a custom-made night guard. This clear oral appliance will be made to fit snugly over your teeth and position the jaw for the prevention of teeth grinding and clenching. Worn at night, the goal is to allow the muscles of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) to relax and the jaw to rest in a natural position. For patients who do not have other concerns such as malocclusion, a night guard can be an effective treatment and alleviate related symptoms and discomfort.
If your bite is dysfunctional due to malocclusion, structural problems related to the teeth or jaw, Dr. Sousa will use advanced technology to evaluate the imbalance. He may recommend a restorative dental treatment to realign the teeth to facilitate proper contact when biting. This can be accomplished using tooth bonding, dental crowns, and other options.
For some patients, a referral to a local orthodontist is necessary to bring the teeth into proper alignment.