Will Bruxism Go Away On Its Own?

Night Guards McLean, VA

Bruxism, or teeth grinding in layman’s terms, is a frequent dental problem. Most people grind their teeth sometimes, whether out of stress, agitation or absent-mindedness, but some people experience chronic teeth grinding that most often occurs throughout the night. This can present a problem since the sleeper usually does not know that they are grinding their teeth, and the problem can go undiagnosed for months or years. Without treatment, bruxism can result in a long list of oral health problems. 

Will bruxism go away on its own?

The answer to this question can be complicated. While it is possible that teeth grinding could resolve itself depending on the underlying causes, the likelihood of it just going away on its own is slim. Understanding what can cause bruxism and how it is treated will give a clearer picture of why waiting for teeth grinding to go away is unwise from a health standpoint.

Causes of teeth grinding

There are many issues that can cause bruxism. Missing teeth, a bite that is not aligned correctly, other dental abnormalities and stress and anxiety are some of the most common causes of teeth grinding. Since most of these problems do not get better unless they are treated professionally, it is also unlikely that the teeth grinding will stop unless these underlying issues are identified and treated first. 

Diagnosing teeth grinding

Since it can be difficult for someone who is sleeping to know if they are grinding their teeth, it is a good idea to know what signs to look for in the morning or to ask a partner that might be sleeping in the same room to listen for the sound of teeth grinding. Physical signs of bruxism include a dull headache that persists most mornings, pain in the jaw or increased problems with TMD and teeth that are wearing much faster than normal. A dentist can evaluate the teeth to determine if bruxism might be a problem. If the dentist suspects teeth grinding, they will likely investigate further and get a medical and mental health history from the patient in order to start searching for the cause.

Treating bruxism

Because bruxism is often a symptom of another problem, treating it often starts with treating the real issue at hand. If stress and anxiety are the primary cause, the dentist might refer a patient to counseling or suggest some other therapies. While a patient is getting treated for the underlying cause, the dentist might make a mouth guard to protect the teeth from ongoing trauma from teeth grinding. A mouth guard will not do much to ease headaches or jaw problems arising from bruxism, so further treatment is important. If the issue is an oral problem, the dentist can work on a treatment plan to address it. 


If you are suffering from bruxism, do not assume that it will go away on its own. Speedy diagnosis will be the first step in a successful route toward recovery. The longer bruxism continues untreated, the higher chance there will be serious dental and health problems as a result.

Request an appointment here: https://www.oaktreefamilydental.com or call Oak Tree Dental at (703) 763-5239 for an appointment in our McLean office.

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