Teeth Grinding/ Bruxism is a warning sign for airway distress
Sleep bruxism is considered a sleep-related movement disorder. People who clench or grind their teeth (brux) during sleep are more likely to have other sleep disorders, such as snoring and pauses in breathing (sleep apnea).
Mild bruxism may not require treatment. However, in some people, bruxism can be frequent and severe enough to lead to jaw disorders, headaches, damaged teeth and other problems.
Because you may have sleep bruxism and be unaware of it until complications develop, it's important to know the signs and symptoms of bruxism and to seek regular dental care.
Sleep bruxism, or nighttime tooth clenching and grinding, rarely occurs in isolation without another condition influencing its presence, and one of the most common coexisting conditions is OSA.
Nearly 1 in 3 adults who are afflicted by OSA clench their jaws and grind their teeth at night. In contrast, approximately 1 in 8 adults in the general population suffer from sleep bruxism.
When a coexisting relationship is present, the successful treatment of sleep-disordered breathing, such as with continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy or an oral appliance, may also greatly improve or eliminate sleep bruxism.
Signs and symptoms of bruxism may include:
Bruxism often comes down to a breathing or airway issue
Night guards are a band aid, but if you want to stop grinding, you have to get to the root cause of the issue.