What is Sleep-Related Bruxism?
Sleep-related bruxism (SRB) is a condition where an affected person grinds their teeth during sleep. New research is beginning to shed light on this common condition which will be discussed.
During sleep, it is common for the lower jaw to move around. This is termed Rhythmic Masticatory Muscle Activity or RMMA. This consists of two forms of muscle activity: a series of repetitive contractions or an isolated sustained contraction of jaw clenching. These muscle contractions, when extreme, produce the tooth grinding sounds during sleep and are referred to as sleep-related bruxism. The patient is usually unaware that they are doing this as it occurs once they are asleep. It is often their bed partner that alerts them to this.
This disorder has received considerable attention in the last few years and has been shown to have a genetic basis and can be initiated or worsened by certain medications.
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