As a child, fears of the Boogey Man or a monster under the bed could keep you up all night. As an adult, real problems with your teeth may replace these imaginary worries and cause pain and health issues that you can’t ignore.
Bruxism, also known as tooth grinding, is a common nighttime occurrence. Many people don’t even realize they are grinding their teeth until they begin to feel pain as tooth structure is damaged and jaw muscles become sore due to repeated clenching. Mouth guards can be specially created at our office to protect your teeth and minimize damage.
Bruxism can also lead to a more severe problem – TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders. These advanced inflammations in the jaw commonly caused by regular teeth grinding result in the swelling of the jaw joint. Headaches, migraines and intense jaw pain are regular side effects. Using the NTI Tension Suppression System, a non-surgical, non-drug device approved by the Food and Drug Administration, we can help alleviate tension and suppress muscle contractions in patients. Only worn when sleeping, this small comfortable device is an ideal solution for TMJ.
Sleep apnea occurs during sleep or deep relaxation when the muscles of the mouth and throat relax and the size of the airway decreases. It is common for the airway to completely close, creating an apnea (which means “stopped breath”), and over the course of just one night, a person may stop breathing numerous times for several seconds per time as airway becomes repeatedly blocked. As an alternative treatment to more complex CPAP machines (similar to oxygen machines), Dental Health and Wellness Boston offers patients oral appliances that have been approved by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine to treat sleep apnea.
Acid Reflux occurs when acid from one’s stomach is able to leak up into the esophagus, often resulting in symptoms of heartburn and coughing. Acid reflux can cause major dental damage in the form of acid erosion, weakening and discoloring teeth permanently. At our dental office, we want to educate patients on the effects of acid reflux and encourage them to visit a doctor if they think they may have this condition to begin treatment as soon as possible. For patients who have already suffered damaged to their teeth, we can personalize a restoration plan to not only bring back a beautiful smile, but a healthy one as well.
Dry mouth or xerostomia occurs overnight when the salivary flow decreases. Saliva is nature’s defense against plaque and bacteria. Infections from plaque build-up resulting in tooth decay may cause tooth sensitivity and discomfort and eventually tooth loss as the internal structure of the tooth (pulp) is destroyed. Regular profession dental cleanings will help reduce the occurrence of plaque build-up; for patients who need more intensive treatment, we also provide periodontal scaling and root planing, a common non-surgical procedure that gives you a much deeper cleaning than basic dental cleaning.
Don’t let dental problems keep you up at night or affect any part of your life, request an appointment with us today.