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from the Academy of General Dentistry

Friday, August 23, 2019
Know Your Teeth Academy of General Dentistry Know Your Teeth


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Nail-biting Can Lead to Bruxism

Chapter: How Your Dentist Can Help

Your dentist automatically checks for signs of bruxism during routine visits. Once the problem is identified, treatment can begin. Therapy helps to change a bruxer's behavior by learning how to rest the tongue upward with teeth apart and lips shut. Simply becoming aware of the problem is usually enough to relieve discomfort and stop the habit.

If necessary, however, a dentist may provide a plastic mouth appliance, such as a night guard, to absorb the force of biting, while preventing further damage to the teeth and assisting in stopping the destructive behavior.

If bruxism is not treated, a patient may have to deal with serious injury to their tooth enamel or they might possibly have to deal with recessed gums in some areas because of the damage done to the alignment of the jaw. Your dentist can examine your teeth to determine whether you may have bruxism and will be able to determine the best method of treatment.

Reviewed: January 2012