T Nation

Grinding Teeth While Sleeping

 For the last 6 months or so I've been doing this.  I wake up and I feel like my jaw is gonna drop off.  It doesn't give me any problems during the day but I fear if I don't do something about this I may be in trouble long-term.

 Does anyone have any experience and knowledge that can help me?



See your dentist and get a night guard.


I had a problem with this and never realized it until my girlfriend brought it to my attention. Eventually, I experienced some jaw discomfort and, oddly enough, my teeth weren't lining up correctly with my jaw closed (this was surprisingly distracting).

I tried getting a night time mouth-piece to prevent grinding teeth. It didn't help and I would recommend against trying one. After sleeping with it in, I found that I couldn't close my jaw the next morning (which was REALLY distracting).

This might sound corny, but I finally stopped grinding my teeth by making a mental note to myself before falling asleep every night, telling myself that I wouldn't grind my teeth. The power of self-suggestion seemed to solve my problems.



Massage the muscles of mastication: temporalis, masseter, medial & lateral pterygoids. See a good dentist and request x-rays to check for cracked teeth. Take care of this now or you are right; you will have trouble long-term.


yeah, buddy. I've got the same exact deal. I grind the shit out of my teeth. I used to go through mouth peices like a champ. Like the guy above me said, get a night guard. I did and it eventually went away.


I've had the same problem and it was causing a lot of discomfort during the day, too. My dentist wanted to custom fit me for a night-time mouth guard, but they were several hundred dollars (!). My chiropractor recommended the Splintek mouth guard and it worked great. It's less than $100 bucks and you can order it yourself. I highly recommend it!



Have you been under any physical or emotional stress lately, or do you think something could be bothering you or causing you to get upset?

The only reason I ask is because it seems odd that a problem like this should pop up suddenly without any apparent cause.


I had this same problem. I was under a huge amount of stress I was grinding my teeth at night and it was causing me to have horrible headaches when I woke up in the morning. I started taking 10mg of Valium at noon and again at 5pm and Lortab 10/500 upon waking and again at noon. The valium helped ease the stress and the lortab got rid of the pain. Of course this is the easy way to treat it - you can get a dental guard from your dentist or begin practicing other forms of stress relief like yoga, breathing control exercises, progressive relaxation techniques, etc. In any case, as your stress level changes (hopefully lowers), you should adjust and stop grinding your teeth on your own. Good luck!

 Thankyou all for the advice.  Actually I have been a bit stressed lately so maybe that IS it.  Strange thing is I seem to grind them more when I sleep on my stomach.

 I think I'll pay a visit to Herbie the dentist and then opt for the Jillybob mouthguard if he tries to rake me over the coals.  Will work on the stress level too.  Thanks much...



I have the same problem and I have found that the best mouth guard I have found snaps on my two front teeth. I have had all the other guards and this thing by far is the best. It is fairly new and I cant think of what the name of it is. I was lucky enough to have insurance pay for damn near the whole bill. I highly suggest you ask Dr. Herbie about it. It beats any other guard out there.



Hey thanks for that info, Jilly. I noticed myself grinding lately, also.

Not fun! Must be stress.


Yeah I have a consistent problem with grinding as well. I do it during the day as well, like when I'm on the computer.

Night-mouthguards worked for me, but it can become problematic because I would saw through my guards usually at a pace of about one per month.

Everyone is dead on balls accurate about stress, funny how the body reacts even when you're in slumber.

Also, ZMA might help, it seems to have helped me get a more sound sleep overall.