Bruxism (from the Greek word bryxo which means “to grind one’s teeth”) is an unconscious muscular contraction of the jaws that affect adults as well as children. While it can sometimes happen at any moment of the day, this involuntary tightening of the teeth occurs mostly at night. There are many causes of sleep bruxism, such as anxiety, dental occlusion, medication, respiration, etc. The act of “bruxing”, which consists of a clenching or tightening of the teeth, can damage the orofacial structures, causing, among others, dental problems (premature wear, teeth breaks, etc.) and musculoskeletal problems (pain, muscle hypertrophy, etc.). In order to limit teeth wear, your specialist can, for instance, invite you to wear occlusal plates (a dental apparatus made to measure for the patient) which will allow to absorb and distribute the tightening forces during the night. Get more information with one of our dentists!
Gingivitis and Periodontitis
If dental plaque is not properly removed during the buccodental hygiene routine, the gums can be affected by two ailments: gingivitis and periodontitis. The first one is an inflammation of the gums and is characterized by redness of the gums themselves and bleeding during brushing or flossing. The second ailment happens when gingivitis is not treated. The consequences of periodontitis can be as serious as the loss of one or many teeth. That is why, in order to prevent gingivitis (which can deteriorate into periodontitis), it is essential to maintain a good buccodental hygiene and to have routine checkups!
Halitosis (Bad Breath)
Even if it is only a minor health problem, halitosis (or “bad breath”) can have major psychological consequences, since the presence of fetid breath can hinder the social life of the person who suffers from it. Besides the consumption of certain foods (onions, garlic, coffee, etc.), the most frequent causes of halitosis are: buccodental hygiene (the food residues generate the creation of nauseating volatile compounds) and gingivitis.
Periodontitis (or parodontosis) is an infection of the various tissues that support the teeth, such as the gum, the alveolar bone, and the periodontal ligament. It is often the result of untreated gingivitis (an inflammation of the gums caused by dental plaque), and is principally due to a bad oral hygiene that generates a build up and a proliferation of bacteria on the surface of the tooth. If periodontitis is not treated, it can generate a destruction of the tissues encasing the tooth, or even the loss of one or more teeth. Bleeding and swelling of the gum are the first symptoms of periodontitis. To stop the progression of the illness, make an appointment with one of our dentists so that a scaling and an in- depth complete cleaning can be carried out.
The mouth guard is a dental device designed to insure maximum protection to the dentition of physical activity amateurs. The practice of contact sports (boxing, hockey, football, basketball, etc.) is actually the main cause of dental fractures. People who practice these sports would do well to wear a mouth guard since this device not only reduces the risks of a brain concussion, but also of injuries to the mouth, jaws, lips and teeth. Even though many can be found on the market, the best mouth guard remains the one that has been made-to-measure by your dentist; crafted from an impression of your mouth, it offers a better fit, superior protection and greater comfort. It is also more stable and does not interfere with one’s respiration or elocution.
Dental Sealants and Fluoride
In order to prevent tooth decay, your dentist can suggest two excellent methods: dental sealant and fluoride. Principally applied on the surface of the molars and the premolars (since they are more difficult to clean), the dental sealant, made of resin, is a thin protective coating applied to the dental surfaces in order to seal the grooves and pits of the posterior teeth. A simple, quick and painless treatment, it allows the protection of the most vulnerable areas by creating a protective barrier against bacteria. Fluoride, for its part, helps to prevent decay and strengthens the enamel of the teeth. Consequently, it is recommended to apply fluoride and use toothpastes with added fluoride. If you brush regularly, and dental plaque nevertheless accumulates in your molars’ crevices thereby causing cavities, we strongly recommend that you discuss the situation with your dentist or your dental hygienist.