Teeth grinding, or bruxism, to give it it’s clinical title can cause far more problems than wearing down tooth enamel. Thankfully, hypnosis can help to eliminate the accompanying anxiety, promote cessation of bruxist behaviour and restore good sleep patterns. Below is an excerpt from an article I wrote for The Irish Dental Magazine. To read the full article you can click here.
Bruxism is a parafunctional habit affecting 20% of people while awake (awake bruxism) and 8% of people while sleeping (sleep bruxism) and is characterized by grinding and/or clenching of the teeth (Amorim, Firstoff, Vieira, Costa & Marques, 2016). The diagnosis of bruxism involves consideration of history, tooth mobility, tooth wear, sensitivity of teeth to cold or air and clicking or locking of temporomandibular joint (Shetty, Pitti, Babu, Kumar and Deepthi 2010). The aetiology of bruxism is a mystery. Possible causes which have been proposed include anxiety, stress, abnormal alignment of teeth, sleep problems such as sleep apnea and an aggressive or hyperactive personality type (mayoclinic.org). Psychotropic medications, for example, antipsychotics and antidepressants, specifically selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), have also been implicated in bruxism (Winocur, Gavish, Voikovitch, Emodi-Periman and Eli, 2003).