Gentle Dental of Shelby Township
4737 24 Mile Rd Suite 1, Shelby Township, MI 48316

The Link Between Tooth Grinding and Anxiety

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The habit of bruxism or nighttime teeth grinding is a common result of anxiety and stress. If you clench or grind your teeth thousands of times while you sleep, the immense pressure you place on your jaw can wear down your teeth and even cause joint and muscle problems. Teeth grinding may also occur when you are awake; you may not even be aware that you are doing it. About one in three people grinds their teeth, and many will suffer tooth decay, sensitive teeth, and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) problems as a result.

Symptoms of Tooth Grinding

If you’re not aware that you’re grinding your teeth, your dentist may be the first to spot the problem. People who are most at risk for the condition include those who are worried, nervous, aggressive, competitive, angry, or frustrated. It commonly accompanies sleep apnea, snoring, or other sleep disorders. Tooth grinding and clenching leads to a variety of symptoms such as the following:

  • Headache or neck pain
  • Jaw pain
  • Earache or a feeling of fullness in ears
  • Tinnitus
  • Tooth sensitivity

Stress, Teeth Grinding, and Sleep

Stressful situations tend to make bruxism worse. In fact, the behavior may begin after a trauma such as a car accident or sudden loss. It’s easy to understand why clenching your jaw or teeth is a natural reaction to stress; a nerve in your jaw leads directly to the part of your brain that controls the fight-or-flight response. Anxiety and tooth grinding can become a vicious cycle. When you grind your teeth at night, it frequently awakens your brain from deep sleep, and the lack of proper sleep exacerbates anxiety problems. Increased anxiety leads to more tooth grinding. Treatments such as medications, therapy, and dental devices like mouth guards are available to improve symptoms of TMJ syndrome and protect your teeth. Consult your dentist for advice.

To get the dental care you deserve from an affordable dentist in Shelby Township, call Gentle Dental of Shelby Township today at (248) 721-4086 or make an appointment.

Gentle Dental offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Shelby Township. With 8 affiliated practices throughout Michigan, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Gentle Dental of Shelby Township, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Gentle Dental of Shelby Township.

Read What Our Patients Say
Patient Reviews
So friendly, and we shared some laughs.
Enrico N.
Dr. STEFFENS is great ! She took her time in explaining the procedure that she was performing and did a excellent job. Deborah, the Hygienist is fantastic ! as well . The entire staff at the office […]
Michael S.
Friendly staff, Dentist very patient with me.
Consuelo K.
Debbie is very thorough.
Rita F.
Quality of service
Flora U.
They are super nice and very gentel I hate going to the dentist but felt secure here. It’s great they are open late a couple nights a week so my husband can go and doesn’t have to take […]
Ladeana S.
I had a small emergency they able to see me immediately they were all very friendly and helpful I had a small emergency been able to get me into your schedule immediately everyone was very helpful […]
Mike C.
Very thorough, answered all my questions, staff is friendly.
Otto A.
The staff at Gentle Dental in Shelby Twp have been my dental professionals for over 20 years. The facility is extremely clean, the dentists are knowledgeable and friendly, Debi the dental hygienist […]
Michele C.
Great service
Jonathan C.
Debi is the sweetest! She always makes my teeth super clean and puts a smile on my face :) I relocated to Florida and when I come back to see family I make sure to get my teeth cleaned here rather […]
Michelle M.
very nice and friendly. very good dentist and cleaning done for your teeth
Robert B.
I am new to this office and my first appointment was pleasant (well… as pleasant as going to the dentist can be, I guess!). The staff was nice and I loved Dr. Steffens.
Casey V.
This is the friendliness most caring office I have ever been to. The six staff members I encountered worked so well together and really seemed to enjoy working with one another, which made me feel so […]
Adam J.
Very friendly!
Amanda P.
Great service
Camilla S.
The staff was very friendly and helpful.
Demetrie W.
Minimal waiting, friendly and knowledgable staff.
Kristie B.
Debbie is an awesome hygienist. She is a passionate about her job and it shows in the results. Kate and Joslyn are awesome too. Keep up the good work GD Shelby.
Mark M.
My 4th time here and again a very comfortable and positive experience. All the staff seems very caring and accommodating about my needs and concerns. I have and will continue to refer this office to […]
Jim C.
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  • Monday 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Tuesday 9:00 AM - 7:00 PM
  • Wednesday 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Thursday 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
  • Friday 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
  • Saturday 8:00 AM - 2:00 PM
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  • Phone: (248) 721-4086
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