Did you know that your teeth actually shift while you're asleep? It's perfectly natural as you move around. Sometimes, this shifting is due to relaxing your jaw muscles. Other times, it can be due to pressure from your wisdom teeth as they begin to erupt through the gums.
Even your sleeping habits can cause your jaw and teeth to shift a bit. While it's natural for your teeth to shift, there are some issues that can arise from this if you're clenching your jaw tightly while you sleep.
Why Is Clenching Your Jaw Bad?
Clenching your jaw muscles while you sleep, also called bruxism, can cause those muscles to be sore. It can also cause damage to your teeth and your bite. Your body may become used to holding your jaw in a different position, which can cause pain and stress on your jawbone, muscles, and joints.
Clenching your jaw also puts a large amount of pressure on your teeth. This can cause your teeth to crack or be pushed out of position.
What Causes this Unnatural Clenching?
Bruxism is usually caused by stress. If you've been under a lot of pressure at work or at home, you may unconsciously start holding that stress in your jaw muscles. It's possible that you'll consciously realize what you're doing during the day and relax your jaw, but it's harder to do that during the night as you sleep.
Do You Have Bruxism?
How can you know if your teeth are shifting naturally at night or if they're being damaged due to bruxism? If you wake up every morning with a sore jaw or a soreness in your mouth, it's likely you are suffering from bruxism.
If you do notice this soreness, you need to come in for a visit. We will examine your teeth to make sure they're not damaged and assist you in dealing with your bruxism.