Could Teeth Grinding Damage My Smile?

des moines bruxism care

If you grind and clench your teeth on a nightly basis, this could lead to cracked or chipped teeth. To avoid these injuries and find relief, your Des Moines, IA, dentist may suggest treatment with an oral appliance, or changes to your daily routine. In today’s blog, let’s look at what you can do to avoid teeth grinding trouble.

The Common Causes of Teeth Grinding

What causes someone to grind or clench their teeth on a nightly basis? Factors vary, but often include issues that bring imbalance to your bite or strain your jaw joints. For example, losing your teeth, developing dental misalignment, injury to the face or jaw, untreated TMJ disorder, and high levels of stress in your daily life. For many, a significant other will alert them to grinding and clenching at night. But there are also symptoms that occur during waking hours, such as jaw pain, headaches, migraines, popping or crackling in the jaw, facial pains, tooth sensitivity, toothaches, and aches in the neck or shoulders. If you begin to experience one or more of these common warning signs, then please contact our team right away!

Dangers to Tooth Structure

When we grind our teeth frequently, this could place serious strain on your smile. The pressure could begin to wear away outer enamel, or even crack or chip a tooth. The damage could make your teeth appear short and uneven, and could also expose the sensitive inner layers of dentin to harmful oral bacteria. The result is the onset of tooth decay and dental infection, which causes worsening pain and could mean the loss of one or more adult teeth. To avoid these major complications, you need to seek treatment right away.

Oral Appliance Therapy and More

With oral appliance therapy, we will create and custom-fit an oral appliance based on detailed digital images and measurements we take of your smile. The device will look like a mouthguard and be worn as you sleep. At night, the device repositions the jaw to ease strain, and also places a barrier between the upper and lower sets of teeth to prevent damage. We could also treat the issue with orthodontics to correct misalignment, or with the placement of a crown to improve overall bite balance. If you have chipped or cracked teeth, dental bonding or even a custom crown could repair the damage and prevent complications. If you have any questions, then give our team a call!


Our team wants to help find the best solutions to teeth grinding for your family. To find out more about helping you avoid bruxism-related damage, then please contact your Des Moines, IA, dentist, Dr. Burds, by calling 515-244-9565.