Worried your teeth are whittling away?
This quick read will benefit you greatly.
And don’t worry:
Teeth grinding is a common issue that’s treatable.
More on that in a second.
First, what is TMJ and how to stop grinding your teeth at night?
TMD Affects the Temporomandibular Joint, Often Shortened to TMJ for Convenience.
When someone suffers from teeth grinding, it can have several lasting effects on overall oral health and wellness.
This is why it’s important to receive proper dental treatment, adjust behavior, and seek out medication and remedies to rectify the causes and effects of teeth grinding at night while sleeping.
Although a large section of the population grinds their teeth, not everyone wants to take traditional medication. Chemical compounds can have unpleasant side effects and are often not compatible with a healthy or eco-friendly lifestyle.
This is why many have turned to find the best homeopathic remedies for teeth grinding.
What Is Homeopathy? Can It Actually Stop Teeth Grinding Pain?
Homeopathy is seen as a safer, gentler way to help the body heal itself without the use of chemical additives or invasive technology. It can be used by many people, including children and pets. The word “homeopathy” is derived from Greek. It uses the words two “homoios,” which means similar, and “pathos,” which means disease or suffering.
The idea is a small dose of a plant or mineral which would typically cause a symptom, such as irritation, which can also cure the symptom. This is one of the main reasons why homeopaths will use a small amount of the poison ivy plant to cure skin rashes.
In the United States, homeopathy has been practiced for 200 years and was even taught in many medical colleges until the 20th century. As such, the creation of homeopathic remedies in the United States is strictly monitored. All remedies need to meet the standards set by the Homeopathic Pharmacopoeia of the United States (HPUS) and pharmaceutical Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP). You should not make your own homeopathic remedies.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), homeopathy is the second largest form of healthcare in the world and continues to be popular in many countries and continents. While North American has not embraced the medical system, other continents like Europe and Asia have. However, there are still many options for homeopathic remedies in the United States, and plenty of homeopaths willing to work with sufferers of bruxism and TMJ/TMD to help alleviate symptoms and change behavior.
Top 7 Home Remedies to Stop Grinding Teeth at Night
Homeopathy is a form of alternative medicine that focuses on the body being able to heal itself. As such, homeopaths often suggest using small amounts of natural plants and minerals to facilitate healing. For the treatment of TMD and tooth grinding, these remedies are used to alleviate pain and inflammation without the use of chemical medication. They can also help correct negative behaviors like constant clenching and unconscious grinding.
There are numerous homeopathic remedies and forms of alternative medicine utilized to treat TMJ and TMD. They range from better nutrition and eating habits to the utilization of herbs and acupuncture. It is best to see a professional homeopath before trying these remedies as a professional will take into account an individual’s physical constitute and risk factors before prescribing. Some of the most common homeopathic remedies include the following:
- Hypericum perforatum
- Magnesia phosphorica
- Rhus Toxicodendron
- Ruta graveolens
Each of these materials is designed to treat a different symptom of TMJ/TMD and bruxism. Please consult your doctor before considering home remedies.
- Causticum is a simple remedy derived from potassium. It works well when managing burning pain in the muscles of the jaws and to address soreness in the teeth and the surrounding gums.
- Hypericum perforatum is the scientific name for St John’s-wort, a common yellow herb. It works to treat sharp, shooting pains throughout the jaw caused by damage to the joint from regular wear and tear.
- Ignatia is derived from the seeds of the St. Ignatius bean tree and can be used to alleviate tension in the jaw. It is ideal for individuals who don’t have pain so much as general discomfort.
- Kalmia is a family of evergreen shrubs, sometimes called mountain laurel, with beautiful white and pink flowers. Homeopaths use it to reduce facial pain around the temporomandibular joint.
- Magnesia phosphorica is another name for magnesium phosphate. It is excellent at reducing muscle cramps and facilitating the movement of the jaw.
- Rhus Toxicodendron is unusual. It is a derivative of poison ivy that can be used to treat pain caused by too much motion of the jaw.
- Finally, there is Ruta graveolens. This is common rue and a homeopath can use it to reduce pain caused by overuse and injury.
How to Take Homeopathic Remedies
When you have jaw pain, it can be difficult to take oral medication. However, homeopathic remedies are designed to be taken orally and held under the tongue for maximum effect. This is because the remedy is often diluted and contains a small amount of the target substance.
People with TMJ/TMD can and should speak to a homeopath about alternative ways to take medication for maximum effectiveness. Depending on the prescribed substance, you might be able to get a cream or oil that is applied to the exterior of the jaw and not taken by mouth.
Do Natural Remedies for Teeth Grinding Have Any Side Effects?
One of the perks of using homeopathic remedies is the reduced chance of experiencing side effects. These remedies use natural ingredients and are in low doses, so you are less likely to experience a traditional side effect like drowsiness.
The only homeopathic remedy which can potentially interact with regular medications like hormonal birth control is St. John’s wort. Remember to consult with a homeopath if you want to take these remedies for an issue with your jaw.
How Quickly Do Homeopathic Remedies Work?
Because homeopathic remedies are weaker than traditional medication, they can take a little longer to work. The ingredients need to be properly digested. It is normal to wait an hour or two to experience relief from swallowed tablets. If you use a lotion or oil, the relief should be almost immediate since the ingredients are absorbed directly into the skin.
Other Homeopathic Techniques
As a form of natural, alternative medicine, homeopathy offers many more treatment options besides consuming plants and minerals. These include paying better attention to nutrition, taking time to relax, meditation, and even exercise.
Nutrition and Supplements
A common concern for many bruxism sufferers is that they are missing out on something nutritionally. This is backed by medical science, which indicates vitamin deficiencies and poor nutrition can increase the likelihood of suffering from jaw issues. A frequently prescribed supplement is Vitamin C.
Vitamin C possesses numerous properties. It can help bruxism and TMJ/TMD sufferers by helping the body rebuild natural cartilage that is broken down by constant jaw movement and irritation. Individuals who choose to take vitamin supplements should make sure they do not interact with any other prescribed medications.
A couple of other nutritional supplements that can be beneficial are glucosamine, calcium, and magnesium. Glucosamine reduces pain and can help rebuild cartilage, particularly among those who suffer from arthritis. One study indicated glucosamine can be just as effective as traditional painkillers like Advil, but that users should be cautious of a potential increased bleeding risk. Glucosamine can be taken as a nutritional supplement when you aren’t taking blood thinners.
Calcium and magnesium are not as reliable as other options, but can still help the muscles of the jaw relax so you do not suffer from symptoms of TMJ/TMD.
Relaxation and Meditation
One homeopathic recommendation is to spend more time relaxing and meditation to address the stress and anxiety that often cause bruxism and other negative behaviors. Meditation can involve deep breathing and taking time out of the day to relax and address common stressors in life.
In addition to general meditation, many homeopaths use essential oils and fragrances to induce calm. These, in combination with an additional form of relaxation like a massage along the jaw, can loosen the muscles and help you stop clenching and grinding your teeth when you don’t realize it.
See more: 10 TMJ pain relief exercises.
What Causes Teeth Grinding During Sleep?
The proper term for teeth grinding is bruxism. It has numerous causes, including damage to the temporomandibular joint. Some people can trace the behavior back to stress and anxiety, which often causes individuals to subconsciously engage in behaviors in an attempt to alleviate mental discomfort. However, the most common cause of teeth grinding is an underlying dental issue such as an abnormal bite, missing teeth, or crooked teeth.
How Do You Know If You Grind Your Teeth?
There are often a few early symptoms of teeth grinding. The problem is most noticeable to those who live with you, especially if you share a room or bed with another person. They will be able to hear you scraping and gnashing your teeth together whether you realize you are doing it or not.
If you don’t live with someone, you can tell you grind your teeth if you wake up with a sore mouth, pain in your jaw, or a persistent headache. As mentioned earlier, bruxism commonly affects the TMJ and can lead to the development of TMD if the behavior persists for a long period of time. Some symptoms would include persistent jaw pain, trouble opening and closing your mouth, and a persistent popping or clicking in the joint.
Another way to tell if you grind your teeth is to visit your dentist for an exam. The dentist will examine your teeth and can identify the telltale signs of wear and tear. These can include chips and cracks in your teeth, as well as flattened cusps.
More Home Remedies to Help Stop Grinding Your Teeth In Your Sleep
Once you know you have a problem, it is important to address the issue. Using homeopathic remedies is an excellent way to treat the symptoms but you also need to focus on stopping the behavior entirely. It is often a good idea to visit a dentist or orthodontist for an assessment. These professionals can provide diagnosis and inform you if the alignment of your jaws is causing the problem.
Besides seeing a professional, there are several behavioral changes that can stop teeth grinding and help you stay healthy.
- Avoid food and drinks that contain caffeine because caffeine
- Avoid excessively acidic food and drink like citrus and soda because they can wear down the dental enamel and soften teeth
- Avoid alcohol because grinding behaviors actually increase after drinking
- Don’t chew on items that are not food, including pen caps, pencils, gum, and ice cubes. These hard materials can damage the teeth further and make it difficult to stop grinding.
- Relax your muscles at night by placing a warm, damp cloth over the muscles so they don’t clench in your sleep.
Besides these basics, it is also important to make a conscious effort throughout the day to change your behavior. Many people who suffer from bruxism clench and grind their teeth throughout the day whether they realize it or not. It’s important to stop every so often and take stock. Are you grinding? Is your jaw clenched?
If you do engage in these behaviors, you must slowly relax your jaw and try to hold it loosely. Your upper and lower rows of teeth should not touch and you should feel the release of tension in the joint. If you find yourself clenching again after a few minutes, hold the tip of your tongue between your teeth.
Your Next Step For Best Results
I have full confidence that if you take what you learned in this guide and implement it…
You’ll see improvement.
But what if we could get you to stop teeth grinding even quicker?
And from this point forward have this problem behind you?
If that’s something you’d like…
Check out our thoughts on Christian Goodman’s TMJ Solution Program here.
It’s a very small investment that can help you more than the small amount that’s placed on it.