Grinding Teeth - Bruxism
Bruxism is the habit of clenching and grinding the teeth. It most often occurs at night during sleep, but it may also occur during the day. It is an unconscious behavior, perhaps performed to release anxiety, aggression, or anger.
Left untreated, it could lead to painful or loose teeth, or teeth that are literally ground down, leaving worn surfaces or fractured enamel. Damage to the teeth needs to be stopped. Pain and injury to the jaw may require surgery.
Some people have episodes that occur less than nightly with no evidence of dental injury or impairment of psychosocial functioning. And others experience nightly episodes with evidence of mild impairment of psychosocial functioning. Yet others have nightly episodes with evidence of dental injury, TMD, temporal mandibular (jaw) disorders, other physical injury or moderate or severe impairment of psychosocial functioning.
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