Do you often find yourself waking up with jaw pain and oversensitive teeth? This could be due to you grinding your teeth during sleep. Also known as bruxism, teeth grinding can have far-reaching consequences for your dental health. While it’s natural to occasionally clench your teeth during sleep, continuous grinding can cause damage and produce symptoms that affect your everyday life. In today’s blog, we go over 6 ways to stop grinding your teeth.

How to Stop Grinding Your Teeth

Many people may not realize they grind their teeth since they do it at night while sleeping. Common symptoms of bruxism include headaches and a sore jaw. Grinding your teeth is no fun, which is why we’ll go over several options you could try to experience some relief:

1. Get a Nighttime Mouth Guard

The most common solution for teeth grinding is wearing a nighttime mouthguard. Our dentist can fit you with a custom mouth guard that will keep your teeth safe during the night. A custom-made guard will fit you more comfortably, making it the optimal choice. However, wearing a mouthguard won’t stop you from grinding. It will only prevent your teeth from getting damaged. That’s why we’ll also go over several things you can do to relax your jaw and reduce your nighttime grinding:

2. Start Exercising

If you do not exercise, we recommend adding a few sweat sessions to your weekly routine. Bruxism often results in stress, which causes tension to manifest in your teeth grinding. However, by doing a little bit of exercise, you can release that tension while also de-stressing. You don’t have to do extreme workouts—a few walks around the block will make a difference!

Woman walking dog

3. Relax Right Before Bed

All the tension that accumulates in your jaw needs to be released before going to bed. That’s why we recommended doing some relaxation techniques, such as one or more of the following:

  • Take a warm bath before bed to relax your jaw muscle
  • Apply a warm, wet towel to your jaw
  • Drink herbal, caffeine-free tea to warm you mouth up

4. Become Conscious of Your Clenching

Have you noticed yourself clenching your teeth during the day? It’s important that you release the tension right away. In fact, sometimes you won’t even realize you’re doing it during the day. Many patients do it while driving without even realizing it. It’s important that you identify when you’re doing it and stop yourself. You will start to notice specific times of the day when your teeth grinding gets more pronounced. When you notice it happening, stop it by dropping your jaw and letting it hang for a while. Move it gently and try to maintain a more relaxed jaw position.

5. Massage Your Jaw Muscles

Can you feel your jaw clenching during the day when you’re encountered with a stressful situation? You should relax your face and massage your jaw muscles every once in a while. Rubbing it will release the tension that was built up throughout the day.

Man massaging jaw

6. Stop Chewing on Non-Food Items

Are you a fanatic of chewing gum all day? Love munching on ice? How about chewing on your pen’s cap? Sadly, you will have to stop chewing these items. These repetitive motions will keep your jaw clenched and tense. Instead, try distracting yourself with a soothing cup of tea or some soft fruits.

Treat Teeth Grinding with California Dental Care

Grinding your teeth is a big problem as it causes many unpleasant symptoms, such as worn-out tooth enamel, jaw pain, headaches, tired jaw muscles, and misshapen teeth. That’s why looking for a solution is essential. If you have any questions on how to stop your teeth grinding, our dental team is more than happy to take a look and give you recommendations according to your specific situation. Give California Dental Care a call at (707) 535-8008, or click here to schedule an appointment today.