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What is the difference between bruxism and TMJ disorder?


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Many people get confused between bruxism and TMJ disorder. They can be associated and interrelated but they are two very different things.


Bruxism, also known as teeth grinding, is a condition which occurs as a result of an individual grinding or clenching their teeth. In many cases, people grind their teeth during the night and therefore they may be unaware that they do it. Some people also clench their teeth during the day.

There are different reasons why people may grind their teeth; in many cases, bruxism is linked to the subconscious and it has a strong link with stress and anxiety. Other possible causes include insomnia, problems with the bite or the alignment of the teeth, alcohol consumption and prescription drugs.

If you grind your teeth, you may find that you experience pain and discomfort in your head and jaw; it is always a good idea to see your dentist as teeth grinding can contribute to oral health problems.

TMJ disorder

TMJ disorder (temporomandibular joint disorder) is a medical condition, which affects the jaw. TMJ causes the jaw joint to become inflamed and it can contribute to headaches, sensations of dizziness, problems with hearing and pain during chewing and biting.

TMJ disorder is linked to stress and can be caused by bruxism; if you experience any of the symptoms listed above, see your dentist as soon as possible.


If you experience symptoms of bruxism or TMJ disorder, arrange to see your dentist as soon as possible; grinding the teeth can cause oral health problems so try to get treatment as quickly as possible. If you grind your teeth during the night, your dentist may advise you to wear a guard to prevent you from grinding your teeth.


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