Question

Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

Why do people grind their teeth at night?

A Answers (3)

  • AMehmet Oz, MD, Cardiology, answered
    Tooth Grinding Causes
    Tooth grinding is based on unconscious movement of the chewing muscles, which can occur at any time. Watch the animation to learn more about causes of tooth grinding.


  • ADe Vizio, DMD, Dentistry, answered on behalf of Colgate
    People may grind their teeth at night (night bruxism) for a number of different reasons:
    • They're stressed, tense, worried, or feel angry.
    • Their upper and lower teeth are misaligned.
    • They have a neurological disorder, such as Parkinson's disease.
    • They grind their teeth as part of their sleep cycle.
    • They're having a side effect of some psychiatric drugs, including some antidepressants.
    Although nighttime teeth grinding has a specific cause in some people, researchers still don't know why many people grind their teeth.
  • Grinding your teeth at night is very common. The causes of bruxism are not known but many believe that stress, sleep disorders and an abnormal bite all play a role.

    If you suspect you are grinding your teeth at night, schedule an appointment with your dentist. Your dentist may recommend stress reduction, or wearing a protective night guard over your teeth while you sleep. You can help prevent teeth grinding by paying attention to your symptoms, making frequent dental visits and talking with your dentist.

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How is bruxism related to stress?