Can fixing my bite correct teeth grinding and clenching issues?Dental Braces & Invisalign
I tend to grind (on the right side) and clench my teeth a lot, and often bite the side of my cheek (usually the right) or my tongue by accident. Are these related to my crossbite, and can fixing my bite eliminate these issues?
From your description, it sounds like you have a posterior crossbite – in which your upper row of teeth/jaw is narrower than the lower row of teeth/jaw, and therefore biting in a reverse relationship with each other. It may occur on one or both sides of the mouth.
Sometimes, to bite in a more comfortable position with more contacting teeth, a person may shift the lower jaw to one side. This may lead to teeth grinding habits. However, the causes for clenching and grinding are multifactorial in nature. So, resolving the crossbite may not necessarily eliminate the habit.
The crossbite can also lead to occasional cheek-biting problems in a handful of people. There is a good chance that fixing this crossbite can resolve your cheek-biting (or tongue-biting), although the result varies between people. On the other hand, some people have adapted the way they chew such that they hardly bite their cheeks.
To summarize, while a crossbite is a possible cause for both grinding and cheek-biting problems, there are also people with crossbites and who do not experience such issues. Correcting the crossbite can potentially resolve these issues, but it’s not a 100% guaranteed panacea.
For more information, do join us at our upcoming NDCS public forum.
there are various reasons for teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism), including a bad bite. If your bite is the main cause for your teeth grinding and clenching, then yes, fixing your bite will help to reduce it significantly. Other contributing factors to bruxism include stress, side effects of medication and sleep disorders.
You may want to see an orthodontist or an oral surgeon for a diagnosis of your dental condition so that he/she can advise on a treatment plan that works for you.
Dr Ho Kok Sen, Oral Surgeon