Snoring & Teeth Grinding

Most people have experienced ‘Bruxism’-known more commonly as teeth clenching and grinding at least once in their life. This occasional grinding does not usually lead to any major issues.
Why do we

Grind Out Teeth?

Most people have experienced ‘Bruxism’-known more commonly as teeth clenching and grinding at least once in their life. This occasional grinding does not usually lead to any major issues. For some, when teeth grinding becomes a far more regular occurrence the teeth can become damaged and their oral health can be compromised. The cause of teeth grinding for many is often closely related to stress and anxiety, sometimes triggered by anger, intense concentration or even drug use. Though predominantly linked with improper bite from missing or misaligned teeth. Those suffering with sleep disordered such as sleep apnoea are also frequent suffers of bruxism.

The effects of snoring and grinding

how they impact our quality of life.

The health of your teeth is vital to maintaining a positive quality of life, long term teeth grinding flattens and fractures your teeth often causing immense pain. Headaches and even migraines can strike suddenly and regularly. Many sufferers develop temporomandibular disorders (TMJ)- this painful disfunction of the jaw joints can inhibit chewing, speaking and other facial movements. The severity of your snoring can not only make sharing your sleeping space difficult, it can have dire impacts on your overall health. Those suffering with regular snoring can experience fatigue , difficulty concentrating and irritability . Others can be suffering from a larger sleep disorder such as sleep apnoea and the more extreme symptoms that accompany that diagnosis.

Why do we snore?

Everyone snores from time to time, and for some, regular snoring occurs without any other sleep related symptoms. Snoring happens when the muscles surrounding the throat and soft palette relax and narrow this partial blockage stops the air from traveling freely through the upper airways. Because of this the soft tissues vibrate and that is what produces the sound heard when someone snores. There are many factors to take into account when considering the cause of snoring, some being;
Obstructive sleep apnoea– while not all people who snore suffer with obstructive sleep apnoea, regular and excessive snoring is a common symptom among them.
Smoking– another common risk factor. It is proposed that the inhalation of cigarettes causes upper airway inflammation  in habitual smokers.
Sedative medication and alcohol consumption.
Sleep position- the gravitational downwards  pull while sleeping on your back works with the natural relaxation of the concerned tissues and can exacerbate snoring.
Chronic nasal congestion.
Anatomy-  Body weight, deviated septum’s, a larger neck circumference and enlarged tonsils and/or tongue have all been linked to snoring.

The management of

snoring and grinding.

The management plan of both snoring and teeth grinding will largely rely on detecting the root cause. Those suffering with habitual teeth grinding need to consult their dentist or oral health professional and address any tooth damage or erosion and discuss the possible benefits of an occlusal device and lifestyle changes.People experiencing mild snoring can consider making daily lifestyle changes to address their triggers; such as their weight, cigarette and alcohol consumption and sleep position. If your snoring is accompanied with symptoms like; regular headaches, daytime sleepiness and high blood pressure it is recommended to consult a health professional to explore the possibility of a sleep disorder.

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