Teeth Care

Warning Signs of Bruxism

woman sleeping peacefully while not grinding her teeth

Checked and updated for accuracy on February 15th, 2023

Bruxism is a condition in which you unconsciously grind or clench your teeth. More Americans are grinding their teeth at night, and it’s creating expensive dental and health problems over time.

So how do you know if this diagnosis represents you or someone in your family or household? Look for these troubling signs of bruxism to nip this problem in the bud.

  • teeth abrasion, flattening
  • fracture lines, chipped and cracked teeth
  • jaw and facial pain
  • headaches
  • sensitive teeth

1. Worn down or flat teeth

sentinel mouthguards flat teeth from grinding graphic

One thing you can notice with bruxism, (apart from the noise, which someone else may notice) is teeth that seem unusually worn down. If you’re grinding them at night, you’ll see this begin to develop on the chewing surfaces of your teeth. They’ll start to look “thicker” and in severe cases they’ll look more like a block. Eventually, the tooth enamel will wear down and deeper layers of your tooth will be exposed.

2. Fracture lines, chipped or cracked teeth

craze lines in teeth from grinding and clenching
Craze lines in teeth from grinding and clenching

Before the chips & cracks begin, tiny fracture lines often develop first. These fracture lines often develop first. These fracture lines are sometimes called craze lines. A dentist can spot these lines during an exam. The earlier you start wearing a night guard consistently, the better. Because you can prevent these little fracture lines from getting worse and developing into chips & cracks.

3. Jaw & Facial Pain

The tension of bruxism has a big affect on the facial muscles and jaw joints. You may notice broad facial pain and/or jaw pain, including clicking or popping when opening and closing the mouth. This occurs because of the tensing forces in the jaw and around the jaw at night.

4. Waking up with headaches

Yes, you can get headaches from bruxism. In fact, it’s very common. Bruxism can cause tension that spreads out and up to the head and cause headaches or even contribute to more severe migraines.

5. Sensitive Teeth

sensitive teeth due to bruxism

If your teeth are more sensitive than they used to be, this isa another warning sign.

Look out for sensitivity to hot and cold, sensitivity when whitening your teeth and sudden “zingers” which are little zaps of pain that can occur.

At Sentinel Mouthguards, we offer affordable solutions for those who suffer from teeth grinding and jaw clenching. Our high-quality mouth guards are crafted with the durability and comfort that it takes to protect your mouth at night or during the day, from damage that can occur.

Your teeth are worth the investment. Browse our dental night guard selections today and get used to drifting off to sleep with confidence that your teeth are protected.

Have questions? Visit our help center today!


sentinel mouthguards author
Ashely Notarmaso

Ashely Notarmaso is the author behind the Sentinel Mouth Guard Blog. She is the CEO and founder of Sentinel Mouth Guards (Founded in 2012) Her long-time work in the dental mouth guard arena and her excellent ability to listen to customer concerns in this often contradictory field has laid the groundwork to explore night guard/mouth guard fabrication in-depth and address real concerns. With the help of her team, she has created a unique fabrication method that promises a great fitting custom oral appliance every time. Amazon’s choice for #1 mouth guard! Visit the online store http://sentinelmouthguards.com

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