Some people wake up in the morning with jaw pain. And most people think they may have a cavity or a “bad tooth” that’s causing them jaw pain. However, there are many other reasons why people have jaw pain when they wake up.
Morning Jaw Pain – Many Causes
There are many reasons why you may be waking up with jaw pain. One of the common reasons for morning jaw pain though is the clenching or grinding of the teeth while the patient is sleeping. While there are no accurate statistics to tell us how prevalent this condition is, a large number of people wake up every day not just to the sound of their alarm, but to regular jaw pain as well.
Medication – Pain Relief with Many Side Effects
People are quick to take an Aspirin or a Tylenol to dull the pain. But these medications have their own side effects after prolonged use. More importantly, taking these medications does not fix the problem, but merely masks the pain.
Why Do We Grit Our Teeth While Sleeping
No one knows for sure why some people clench their teeth in their sleep while others don’t. Stress is always considered a major factor. Breathing problems while sleeping like snoring or sleep apnea also can result in the patient clenching their teeth. Regardless of what causes clenching, the damage that this disease causes is profound. Inability to open and close the mouth comfortably, difficulty chewing, jaw pain, and headaches are only a few of the symptoms that people suffer from as a result of clenching. Gone untreated, clenching can lead to TMJ problems.
How to Treat Teeth Grinding
While we are awake, we can control (more or less) what we do with our bodies. People who clench their teeth while awake can be trained to stop this harmful habit. However, you cannot train a sleeping person not to clench. For this reason, people who suffer from this disease need an appropriate “mouthguard” for when they sleep. Without the proper mouthguard (or no mouthguard or the wrong type) the symptoms will continue to worsen, resulting in irreversible damage to the jawbones, the teeth, and ultimately the face.
Our San Marcos dentist is trained in treating this group of disorders. To learn more about this horrible disease, visit our webpage dedicated to jaw pain. If you or a loved one suffers from any of these symptoms, contact us so that our dentist can help you find relief. We are located in San Marcos, California. Call us at (760) 510-9009.