Have you ever wondered if teeth grinding is more prevalent during the winter months? Nearly 8 percent of adults suffer from Bruxism, the medical term for teeth grinding. Let’s take a look at what happens during these chilly times of the year with the help of your top dentists in Blountville TN and Bristol VA.
What is Bruxism?
This medical term simply refers to the occasional grinding or clenching of the teeth. Most people will do it occasionally as a result of stress or tension. When it becomes a regular occurrence, it can become damaging to the teeth.
Dangers of grinding your teeth include:
· Wear and tear against enamel
· Aches in the jaw
· Damage to the tongue or cheeks
· Broken or chipped teeth
Common causes of bruxism include:
· Tooth misalignment
Trouble During Winter
Winter weather can lead to an increase in grinding behaviors. First, you have the stress of the holiday seasons which can lead to increased bruxism. In addition, the cold weather can cause discomfort in the mouth which people subconsciously try to correct by grinding the teeth.
On top of that, the cold weather has the tendency to cause you to shiver. This can cause even more damage as the teeth clack together. As you tense the body in an effort to stay warm, you also clench your teeth together, which can to even more issues.
What to Do Instead?
When heading out into cold weather, practice these tips to protect your teeth:
· Bundle up and stay warm.
· Avoid caffeine.
· Exercise to combat stress.
· Wear a night guard to protect against further damage (ask us about night guards).
The key to a healthy smile is to be happy and avoid stress. The winter months can bring plenty of stress into our lives, but don’t forget to take care of yourself, slow down and enjoy life! To discuss any dental problems related to stress, don’t hesitate to contact your top dentists in Blountville TN and Bristol VA. Call Seaver & Pittman, DDS at (276) 466-2028 for our Bristol location or call Blountville Dental Associates at (423) 217-1338 for our Blountville location.