Teeth clenching, also called bruxism, doesn’t necessarily stop when you lose your teeth. In fact, some people who have never experienced bruxism before develop it after they get dentures
Bruxism Is Hard on Dentures
During bruxism, your chewing muscles clamp down very hard, sometimes much harder than you are able to consciously bite your teeth together. Obviously, this puts extra stress on your dentures, causing them to wear down faster or break.
But even if bruxism occurs when you have your dentures out, such as sleep bruxism, it can cause damage to your dentures. First, it may lead to excessive pressure on your gums and bone, leading to rapid resorption of your bones. And if you’re clenching your jaws at night, you may develop an imbalance in your jaw muscles that can lead to uneven wear or poor denture fit.
Dentures Can Contribute to Bruxism
Dentures can also cause bruxism. Among the contributors to bruxism is a bad bite, which puts your jaw muscles in an imbalance, which leads them to contract forcefully as part of an attempt to restore balance. Unfortunately, this often has the opposite effect, creating uneven wear on your dentures and putting your bite even further out of balance.
Another problem is that the lack of teeth at night might be stressing your muscles because they can’t get to a relaxed position.
Treating Bruxism with Dentures
Neuromuscular dentistry is the study of your mouth as a system of multiple parts, and how those parts work together to create a functional jaw system. It helps us understand the causes of bruxism and provide treatments.
It’s also the underlying basis for FOY® Dentures, which are designed to help balance your jaw system. This is part of what gives them their exceptional fit and function, but it means they might also be able to help resolve your bruxism.
If sleep bruxism is a problem, a nighttime appliance that holds your jaws in a more relaxed position might be the answer. Implant dentures might also be recommended so you can have your teeth at night.
And if it’s impossible to resolve your bruxism, reinforced dentures can be used that have much better resistance to wear and breakage.
If you would like to learn more about how to deal with teeth clenching if you have dentures, please contact a local FOY® Dentures dentist today.