Many people may not realize that their teeth should only contact for about five minutes each day. When chewing normally, there should only be brief intervals on contact between the enamel surfaces of the teeth, which are, in fact, the hardest substance in the human body. If a normal pattern is taking place, only slight amounts of wear and tear occur over the years, although bite edges can sometimes chip a little.
Dr. George has found that individuals that wake up in the morning with a sore jaw or headache may be experiencing the side effects of teeth grinding while they sleep. Patients whose teeth begin to take on a flattened look on the surface, or display thinning enamel, may be grinding their teeth. Many are not even aware they are doing it!
The grinding of teeth is a subconscious habit. It is typically associated with stress, but there can be other causes as well. Grinding can happen during the day as well as the night. It not only damages the teeth, but overworks and sometimes enlarges the jaw muscles. This unnecessary, sustained force on the mouth can damage the jaw joints and lead to arthritis, chronic pain, and popping or clicking noises.
Through his standard through examination, Dr. George can easily determine if a patient is grinding his or her teeth. Another reason he has been repeatedly voted as a “Best Dentist” in North Coast San Diego Reader’s Choice “Best Of” poll is that Dr. George excels in creating strategies to help the patient refrain from damaging their teeth during grinding. One solution Dr. George offers is a sophisticated appliance that the patient can wear to help preserve their teeth.
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