Teeth grinding is much more common than people think. A client came to Time Dental suffering from sensitve teeth. It happened every time he had something cold to drink and sometimes when he brushed his teeth. He had been tolerating this for a very long time and thought it was normal.
On assessing his mouth, teeth and gums, he had alot of wear on his back teeth. Vertical enamel fracture lines were also visible on the majority of his front teeth. But he also had multiple large holes/cavities at the gum line of many of his back teeth. He reported suffering from regular headaches and again thought that this was just something people regularly suffered from.
What he was not aware of was that he was clenching and grinding his teeth at night and in the daytime. If you are someone who grinds your teeth or even clench your teeth together you are putting 10 times more pressure on your teeth than normal. This huge amount of stress causes the thinnest part of enamel on your teeth which is by the gum line to start shattering. The end result is a hole by the gum line of the tooth called an Abfraction cavity. If left as a cavity the tooth is exposed as it has lost its enamel layer and is now susceptible to cold temperature changes and tooth decay.
To help stop the cavity from progressing, white fillings or composite fillings are a great way to seal the hole and protect the tooth around the gum line. The next step is to deal with the tooth grinding. The best way that consistently delivers results is to provide a night guard or splint that helps reduce the stress and tension on the teeth. This will also reduce the occurance of headaches.