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Often patients develop joint or muscle discomfort created by a dysfunction of the masticatory system. This can be caused by trauma, parafunctional habits (grinding and clenching), or poor dental work. It is truly the process of developing functional harmony between the teeth, muscles, and joint.  Also, with patients having a longer life span, it is imperative to help protect the teeth from functional damage so that they can last a lifetime. At least half of all dental treatment today is due to functional damage of teeth.

Bruxism is excessive teeth grinding or jaw clenching. It is an oral parafunctional activity. (it is unrelated to normal function such as eating or talking). Bruxism is a common with reports of prevalence range from 8% to 31% in the general population. Several symptoms are commonly associated with bruxism, including aching jaw muscles, headaches, hypersensitive teeth, tooth wear, and damage to dental restorations. If nothing is done, after a while many teeth start wearing down until specific teeth or all of the dentition is distroyed.

The causes of bruxism are not completely understood, but probably involve multiple factors. Daytime bruxism is more common in women, whereas men and women are affected in equal proportions by sleep bruxism.