7 Surprising Home Remedies for Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding (bruxism) is a common problem. In fact, one in 12 adults grind their teeth at night. If you have high stress and anxiety levels (the two most common culprits of teeth grinding) your risk for bruxism rises.
Yes, everyone’s risk increases significantly during a coronavirus pandemic, quarantine, and fears of catching a potentially life-threatening illness like Covid-19. Teeth grinding can also be caused by sleep disorders, an abnormal bite, or missing or crooked teeth.
Most people don’t suffer from teeth grinding effects, but others can get fractured teeth or jaw pain. To keep your bruxism at bay, no matter the cause, you can try some effective home remedies.
Proper nutrition has always been a key to a healthy body. Some dietary changes like increased magnesium intake can help you fight teeth grinding. Magnesium has been shown to benefit muscle and heart health. Since bruxism can also be accompanied by TMJ disorder, a magnesium-rich diet can help you treat TMJ as well.
The relaxing effects of magnesium either applied topically, eating magnesium-rich foods or taking magnesium supplements can improve the condition and promote muscle health.
2. Turmeric milk
You may know that drinking a glass of milk before bed is beneficial for overall health. Mixing turmeric with milk is even better. Turmeric milk can help manage teeth grinding by relaxing your nervous system and encouraging healthy sleep. Plus, turmeric has been shown to have pain-relieving properties.
Poor sleep can worsen symptoms of TMJ. When we do not cycle through our complete sleep cycle, our bodies tend to process pain differently. Caffeine, chronic stress, alcohol, and late-night electronic devices impact our ability to have our REM sleep cycle.
3. Stress management
Long-term stress is a primary cause of teeth grinding, so it’s time to reduce your stress levels as soon as possible. You might notice tightening muscles in the neck, jaws, or upper back. Various stress management therapies can help improve tissue relaxation and lower muscle spasm and can be good ways to lessen teeth grinding.
4. Bite guard
Wearing a nightguard overnight can reduce bruxism and prevent damage to teeth. Your dentist takes impressions of your teeth and a bite guard is made to fit perfectly. You can also opt for a do-it-yourself one if you’re looking to save money. It prevents the back teeth from touching when you sleep.
5. Epsom salt baths
Epsom salts contain detoxing compounds that help our body eliminate toxins and heavy metals. This compound of magnesium and sulfate is also popular for softening and exfoliating skin, drawing out impurities, and even relieving cold or flu symptoms.
Plus, taking Epsom salt baths will help increase your magnesium intake. Magnesium absorption through the skin will bind with serotonin in the brain and help your body relax and reduce stress. Epsom salt baths are also good at reducing muscle tension. Relieving any aches and cramps will help you improve your sleep.
6. Jaw muscle massage
You have a few muscles that work to clench and open the jaw. These are the masseter, temporalis, medial pterygoid, and lateral pterygoid. When these muscles are overly tight, they can aggravate the mouth and worsen bruxism. Just massage them daily to loosen up the musculature.
7. Hot towel compress
Warming up can be another good option for your bruxism. This method is best done using a heating pad. While lying down, rest one side of your face on a heating pad for 15 minutes, then repeat on the other side. The heat boosts the local blood supply, increases blood circulation, and helps relax the muscles. Heat might also reduce tension, lowering your chances of getting cracked teeth.