It goes without saying that there are countless factors out there that negatively impact the quality of our smiles. What’s more, these concerns can lead to bigger problems that not only impact appearance but function and overall quality of health as well. Even still, conditions exist that you might not even think influence your oral health, but actually have a bigger impact than you initially thought. In today’s blog, your North Hollywood, CA dentist would like to explore this concept by taking a look at what it means to have a sore jaw, and how you might be at risk for a dangerous dysfunction.
It’s Probably Bruxism
Waking up with a sore or tense jaw is not a very common phenomenon, yet is typically written off as just a miscalculation in sleeping position. As the phenomenon continues, however, one might wonder as to why it keeps happening and what might be the cause. In most cases, a sore jaw results from an individual clenching his or her teeth and subsequently moving the lower mandible from side to side. This process is known as bruxism and involves incessant and chronic teeth-grinding.
Those who endure the effects of bruxism typically become subject to increased chances of decay or infection as the surfaces of the teeth continue to become worn down. What’s more, one may experience higher risks of structural chipping, cracking, and breakage as well. Fortunately, this can be tended to with the help of a custom oral appliance. To learn more about this process, contact our office.
What is the Cause?
There are a few different factors that may lead to teeth grinding. For instance, environmental stressors or internal anxieties can cause an individual to tense up and clench. Other factors include the body’s innate response at survival. You see, bruxism causes the throat muscles to restrict and open the airway. Therefore, grinding can help unblock the airway in the event that an individual is suffering from a sleeping disorder such as obstructive sleep apnea.
Regardless of the cause, however, not seeking treatment will inevitably lead to a dangerous jaw dysfunction known as TMJ disorder. Call our front desk to learn more about this phenomenon.
The Dangers of TMJ Disorder
As you continue clenching and grinding, you become more at risk of your lower mandible becoming misaligned from one or both of your two temporomandibular joints (TMJs) at which your jaw hinges to your cranium. This occurrence is known as TMJ disorder and is accompanied by difficulty opening the mouth, tissue damage, and an incessant popping or clicking sensation.
Learn More Today
Contact Modern Smiles in North Hollywood, CA by calling 818-763-9353 to schedule your next appointment with our team today, or learn more about the signs and symptoms of TMJ disorder.