Northwest Center for Prosthodontics provides sleep apnea treatment in Olympia, Washington, for patients who suffer from this disorder. Call 360-459-4400 to schedule an appointment with our dentists, Dr. Lawton and Dr. Manchester. We look forward to finding out what we can do to help you sleep better!

Sleep Apnea and Bruxism

Bruxism is the condition of persistent teeth clenching and grinding. It is responsible for significant tooth wear and decay in patients that do not receive treatment. It is also a contributor to TMJ disorder. Daytime bruxism is often associated with stress, and can be improved by lifestyle changes; causes of nighttime bruxism are more varied and difficult to control. One factor in sleep bruxism is sleep apnea.

Many sleep bruxism episodes are related to disturbances in sleep. All people experience natural shifts in sleep patterns every night as we move through sleep cycles. In patients with sleep apnea, though, these disturbances tend to be more severe and occur more often, leading to an increased number of bruxing episodes. In some cases, these can amount to hundreds of individual episodes a night.

Sleep bruxism contributes greatly to dental attrition, leaving patients more prone to tooth sensitivity and decay. It can also aggravate TMJ issues and further detract from overall sleep quality. Fortunately, the same oral appliances that help treat obstructive sleep apnea are also useful in preventing sleep bruxism.

If you have noticed poorer sleep quality, jaw soreness, or even tooth wear, we invite you to talk with our prosthodontists to see if a sleep apnea appliance would be good for you.