Problems That Bruxism Can Cause

Tmj Dentist Coral Gables, FL

The condition bruxism is commonly seen in dental patients. Bruxism is the medical term that is used to describe grinding and clenching of the teeth together. It is most often done while a patient is sleeping, making it more difficult to control. The root cause of teeth grinding is still not fully understood but is thought to be connected to airway issues such as sleep apnea, as well as dental problems such as misalignments of the teeth and jaw. Stress and anxiety may also be a factor in the development of the condition.  

Complications of bruxism

Grinding and clenching of the teeth can cause dental complications if left untreated. These are a few problems that can occur.

Cracked or broken teeth 

The constant grinding back and forth of the teeth can result in a crack or break in one or multiple teeth. The amount of pressure and force of clenching the teeth together makes them highly susceptible to damage. Tiny cracks can cause discoloring of the teeth.

Worn enamel 

Enamel, which is the mineralized hard substance that protects the teeth, can become worn and damaged from teeth grinding. If the enamel is destroyed, teeth are more vulnerable to decay, infection and gum disease. The teeth can become painfully sensitive as well. Enamel cannot grow back, meaning this damage is irreversible. Depending on the severity of enamel loss, remineralization and dental bonding can help restore some mineral content. 


It is common for headaches to occur in patients with bruxism. This is due to the constant teeth grinding and clenching of the jaw causing tense muscles in the face and neck.

Muscle pain 

The condition typically results in the muscles of the jaw being clenched tightly. This can cause the muscles to be sore and painful and may make chewing difficult. A sore jaw upon waking is one of the main signs of teeth grinding in dental patients who are otherwise unaware that they have the condition.

Receding gums 

Teeth grinding over long periods of time can cause the gums to recede. Receding gums can cause tooth sensitivity to cold and hot temperatures. Gum recession can also cause teeth to become loose. 

Temporomandibular joint disorders 

The temporomandibular joint that attaches the jaw to the bottom part of the skull has muscles nearby that help the mouth to open and close. When these joints move improperly or are misaligned, it results in a condition known as temporomandibular joint disorder, commonly referred to as TMD or TMJ. Teeth grinding can cause TMD or worsen it for patients who already have the condition. TMD results in jaw pain and difficulty chewing and often causes a clicking sound with movement of the jaw muscles.


While bruxism is not serious, it can cause dental complications and permanent damage if left untreated. A dentist can help with a customized mouth guard or suggest other techniques such as stress management to prevent teeth grinding and help patients protect their smiles.

Request an appointment here: or call Gables Exceptional Dentistry at (305) 203-4132 for an appointment in our Coral Gables office.

Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: TMJ Dentist in Coral Gables, FL.

Recent Posts

How A TMJ Dentist Can Help You

A TMJ dentist is a dentist who is trained in general dentistry but continues their education with a focus on the temporomandibular joint and its disorders. They spend their days treating general dental conditions, however, much of their efforts are spent diagnosing, managing, and treating TMJ disorders.TMJ dentists are great resources to utilize when suffering…

A Night Guard Can Help Alleviate Pain From TMJ Disorder

TMJ is a painful disorder that is caused by swelling and irritation of the joints that allow the jaw to function, which can be caused by natural factors over time or a sudden impact such as whiplash. A minor misalignment in the jaw can lead to discomfort that not only persists in the jaw but…

A TMJ Dentist May Be The Solution You're Looking For

TMJ disorder has several causes that determine which treatment is best. Schedule an appointment to find the right one.TMJ stands for the Temporomandibular Joint and is more than just a mouthful. This joint is responsible for helping the jaw to move, open, and close without issue. If you experience any challenges with your jaw, then…

5 Signs You May Need To Visit A TMJ Dentist

TMJ, or Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, is a condition where the hinge of the jaw does not work properly and it requires the services of a specialized TMJ dentist to rectify. But how does one recognize it? And how can a TMJ dentist help? TMJ is often characterized by pain or popping sounds in the jaw…

Recent Posts

Key Benefits Of Dental Veneers

Key Benefits Of Dental Veneers

Those wishing to change multiple aspects of their smile can benefit from dental veneers. They are an all-in-one cosmetic treatment that can address multiple aesthetic concerns. Not only can veneers fix multiple cosmetic issues in just a few dental appointments, but also they can give you a stunning new smile you are excited to show…

Are Bleeding Gums A Sign Of Gum Disease?

Are Bleeding Gums A Sign Of Gum Disease?

Most people have experienced seeing red on the bristles of their toothbrush, or a pink tint in the sink when they expectorate after brushing. It is normal to feel a bit of concern when noticing blood in the mouth because bleeding gums are a symptom commonly associated with gum disease. However, while chronic bleeding gums…