Are TMJ And Bruxism Linked?


vlachakistmjbruxismIf you suffer from frequent headaches or issues with your jaw then you may experiencing a serious oral health issue. Both TMJ disorder and bruxism can lead to these symptoms, as well as complications that hurt your overall oral health. Are TMJ and bruxism linked? How does the doctor identify and treat these oral health concerns?

TMJ Disorder

Also known as TMD, this issue occurs when the temporomandibular joints undergo excessive amounts of strain. The stress on the jaws can be the result of injury, tooth loss, misalignment, or even bruxism. Patients experience difficulty fully opening and closing the mouth correctly, as well as pain in and around the face and jaw. Treating the issue can ease symptoms and protect your oral health.


Bruxism refers to the persistent grinding of the teeth or clenching of the jaw. These episodes typically happen while the patient is sleeping. The issue may be rooted in high levels of anxiety, injury to the jaw, malocclusion, or TMJ disorder. Without treatment, the frequent grinding can wear down teeth or cause them to crack or chip. Soon, the teeth have a higher risk of developing decay and infection. You need treatment to avoid the uncomfortable symptoms and protect the health and stability of your smile.

Treatment Options

The doctor will first need to examine your smile to identify the cause and severity of the issue. For teeth grinding, the doctor can recommend an oral appliance to place a barrier between the upper and lower teeth, preventing further damage. Likewise, TMD may also be treated with an oral appliance in some cases. Other treatment options include stress reduction, dental work, and anti-inflammatory medications. If you have any questions about treating teeth grinding or TMD then please contact our office today. Don’t live with sore jaws, headaches, or aching teeth.


At Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry in Houston, TX, Dr. Amy Vlachakis (pronounced Vla-ha-kiss) and her dedicated staff strive to make everyone feel like family, while providing top-notch general, cosmetic, and family dentistry services to patients of all ages. To learn more, or to schedule a consultation, call our office today at (281) 974-4494. Located in Memorial City Plaza, we proudly serve patients throughout Houston, Memorial City, Bunker Hill, West Beltway, City Center, Hedwig Village, and all surrounding communities.

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