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Are you grinding away your dental health?
Updated: 12/19/2008 6:00:22 PM
 

Are you grinding away your dental health? Even if you make every effort to maintain good dental hygiene, there are certain factors affecting your dental health that are more difficult to control.

For example, many people grind their teeth at night - a behavior that can lead to dental health damage.

Teeth grinding, otherwise known as bruxism, is common but should be addressed before its effects become serious, according to the Pennsylvania Dental Association.

It isn't always obvious if you grind your teeth at night, but symptoms to look out for include a sore jaw or a dull headache upon waking.

If you suspect you suffer from bruxism, a dentist can make a recommendation for treatment, such as wearing a nightguard.

Grinding is often caused by misaligned teeth, in which case a dentist should also be able to address the underlying problem.

PDA member Dr Bruce Terry urged patients who have concerns about bruxism to come in for a dental checkup.

"If the pattern can be stopped then the pain goes away without unnecessary dental work," he said.

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