Back on My Grind

Never, in all my four decades as a breathing slash sleeping humanoid, have I ever been told that I snore. So, at least I’ve got that going for me. Howeva…since I was in early grade school, there’s been no one who didn’t delight in their opportunity to tell me that I grind my teeth while I’m sleeping. I never had much proof of it. Didn’t believe it. It never woke me up. I couldn’t recreate it while I was awake. The reasons for my disbelief went on and on and on.

Then? I had two children who manage to vibrate the bed with their night grinding and never have a memory or notion of it the next day. They still don’t believe me for many of these same reasons. The same reasons that, up until recently, caused me to doubt these repulsive stories about myself! Night Grinding…*Indeed*!

My oldest daughter was blessed with the same space in her front teeth that I had growing up. I figure I must have monster molars because, eventually, my space grew in. But my front four just wouldn’t “stay put”…curious. But, okay. So they put a small wire behind them. A wire which has mysteriously snapped not once or twice, but three times. It’s an easy fix. But, I just figured, eh…I have to go easier on the Starlight Mints. Couldn’t be anything else!

My little one has been similarly blessed with always having a good checkup. But, alternately, inherited my curse of the whole pacifier (suckie) thing πŸ˜’. I had mine until I was four. She is seven and still finds comfort in hers at night. When I told her dentist about her grinding, she told me not to rush the suckie away because it keeps her teeth parted and the damage from a pacifier is far less comparatively than that of grinding her teeth. And rush it away I did *not*! But she has chewed through roughly 80 suckies in her lifetime. Similar to the two times I relented in buying little rubber strips to put between my back teeth at night and bit right through both. Must be a faulty product! Grind my teeth!? Clutch the pearls, never!

Admittedly, I’ve never needed much dental work. I have one crown which, to the surprise of no one but me apparently, was because of a fractured molar. Since getting it, I’ve attributed all my jaw pain to this one perceived ‘botched’ crown. Even though, at night I often have to consciously part my teeth because I feel my jaw clench in tension as I’m ‘resting’. I always thought it was just the general high-strung’edness I’m always accused of…and that damn crown. Then last year, I get an abscess in my jaw. The lovely ladies at the ER say words like ‘bloodstream’, ‘infection in your heart’….’near your brain’. Good things like that. And rush me to antibiotics. It goes away. I blame the crown and go on with my life.

Then…with the impending polar vortex upon us at the end of January, I crack another…molar. Major. Like, can’t be fixed, Major. They graciously removed it for me and hauled it away in forty below temps to the place all Grinders teeth go to quietly die.

…When I’m back for my cleaning in February, he says, “I see a problem”. A problem he’d surely seen last time but had decided to let me live on oblivious for a month. He said, over the years, the insidious intermittent abscess had left a hole…in my jaw bone…I say, self righteously, still in that relative oblivion, “I know! It’s that damn faulty crown!” I knew it, that damn crown! At which point he and his assistant both quickly correct me, “No. The one in front of it!”


It was cracked as well. Had been for a long time which is what had caused all the problems with swelling and pain in the last year or so. Then we talked about fun stuff like necrotic tissue and granulation and infection and horse antibiotics and a three hour procedure and a years healing time and he scheduled me for my first friggin’ root canal that I ended up having last Tuesday. Mind you, I am a fantastic patient…but ‘exploratory’ root canals are no joke. BUT, I did get secret ice cream for myself and got to skip school that day! Good with the bad, my friends.

In summation, any other place, you’re golden but, God help you if you are a molar in the Southeast quadrant of my mouth. It’s a damn good thing I positively and unequivocally do NOT grind my teeth. Just imagine all the trouble I’d have then!!!


18 thoughts on “Back on My Grind

  1. Thankfully I’ve never been one for grinding, but, and I will deny this if you pass it along to anyone I know, I do know I snore haha only when I’m sick though. I’ve actually woken myself up a few times 🀭🀫 stuffy noses are the worst!

    1. I think it’s hilarious when people wake themselves up snoring πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

      1. Lol I’m not sure who you’re referencing right now, Sam – certainly not me πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

        1. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚

  2. Wow! I have had issues with this, but not to that degree. Yes on the cracked molar and eventually crown, but not the rest. I’m kinda floored, though, that no one ever suggested you get a bite split/bite guard/night guard (one made by a dentist). I personally cannot wear/use one, but they do wonders if you can. Might be something to talk to your dentist about, just a thought.
    As for not “knowing” because it never bothered you or woke you… my hubby does that, but it IS snoring and snapping his teeth together (not grinding). I cannot tell you how many times I’ve had to poke him in the side to get him to change positions so he will stop. Most of those times, he swears he wasn’t even asleep so he could NOT have been doing either. Oh, he also falls asleep at the drop of a hat, sometimes mid conversation, so we both know he’s full of it.

    1. Oh they suggested it! πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ I was living at a level of denial that can only be described as 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea. I honestly would think, “why the hell are they trying to offer me a bite guard?” πŸ˜‚ And when I said no to a dentist made pricy one, they offered me sports ones. On and on.

      When he did the root canal and they rebuilt it, he took a peak off that tooth so it doesn’t hit my uppers anymore during paralyzing fits of preposterous night grinding! I should be good for a while, I hope.

      The that where people clack their teeth together? Like chomp*chomp?

      1. Snapping is exactly that! Imagine just starting to doze off and you hear this crazy loud clack of teeth smacking together? Honestly, I don’t know how the hell that doesn’t hurt! Yet he will still swear up and down he didn’t do it and he wasn’t even asleep. Lol!
        My clenching and grinding has led to a lovely issue with TMJ, basically, my jaw pops out of joint/alignment and I have to pop it back in, often by doing weird things to get everything to line back up again. And it HURTS more times than not and is loud as hell. The “Was that your JAW!?” comments are always fun to answer. I honestly think I’d rather get another crown than deal with this. Sadly, the guards don’t work for me, for a number of reasons (feeling like I’m drowning in my sleep when I had one for the upper teeth was NOT fun).
        I really hope this fixed everything for you and you don’t have to deal with it anymore.

        1. Oh man, how have i not had my jaw pop out? I crackle a little though πŸ€” I think that’s bad too.

          Even after this stupid root canal debacle he says I’ll STILL need a crown on it later on?? Teeth are no good, I tells ya.

          Thats exactly right, Im not sure how anyone can stand having those stuck in their face while they’re sleeping. Awake I could. But not asleep! I found the thinnest, smallest thing I could and even that was undesireable. 😣

  3. Good grief! Sounds awful.

    I grind too, my jaw hurts….πŸ™„ They gave me a retainer to wear at night which took months to get used to. Then, I was sitting an Airedale puppy and he nosed around and found it and chewed it to death. $400 later (thankfully it was covered by work insurance) I still use it at night. And my jaw is a little less painful.

    So, I hear you. πŸ™‚

    1. They offered to make one, at a price of course, and I thought, NEH! I honestly didn’t know why they brought it up πŸ˜‚The strips I bought were about all I could stand for sleeping…and they didn’t prove tough enough!

  4. Yeah. I feel your pain, my grinder brother. I found a mouthguard from the local sporting goods supplier very helpful. And far less costly.

    1. They are way cheaper than dental or orthodontic ones for sure! I just caaaan’t sleep with anything in my mouth. The little strips were about all I could bear and even those threw off my bite enough by overcompensating for them that that gave me pain too! πŸ˜‚ Can’t win!

  5. “Clutch the pearls, never!” That was funny πŸ™‚ The tooth though – Ouch! Glad it is taken care of!

    1. πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚ Hahah, not meee! Nevva! Lol. The swelling has gone down now after a few days and it’s feeling good after a little file down action also!

  6. Ouch. I just noticed that I grind my teeth a bit when I’m awake. A slow, scraping slide. It’s lovely. but… I won’t complain. Yours sounds so much worse. I’m terribly sorry about all that trouble. Here’s to healing!

    1. Thank you! I clench my jaw in the daytime too. I can never recreate the grinding noise or action but I *know* I have that tension in the day as well! 😣😣😣

  7. I’ve been told I both snore and grind. What can I say, I’m a delight. 🀣
    Glad you got this fixed and that you are on the mend. Dental work ain’t no joke.

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