When money’s tight, a trip to the dentist’s chair is reserved for emergencies only. You can get by without a checkup for the sake of saving money, as long as there’s nothing obviously wrong with your teeth.
With this rule in place, it makes sense you wouldn’t make an appointment over grinding your teeth. But this decision could cost you.
While it may seem harmless, grinding your teeth can slowly damage your teeth over time. Ignoring this bad habit can lead to dental care far more expensive than a routine checkup.
Do You Grind Your Teeth in Your Sleep?
Do you wake up with a headache and sore jaw? Does your partner hear you gnashing your teeth in the night? There’s a good chance you have sleep bruxism.
Sleep bruxism is the official term for involuntary teethgrinding. It’s caused by malocclusions (when your teeth don’t meet properly when you bite), medications, or extreme stress and anxiety. Roughly 1 in 10 people in the US have it.
Unfortunately, many teeth grinders choose to ignore their affliction. After all, you bite down to chew food everyday. What could go wrong now that you do it at night?
The problem is that you can’t control how powerfully you bite when you’re asleep. Unchecked, your jaw can exert 250 pounds of force on your teeth when you grind them.
What Are the Consequences of Bruxism?
At that strength, headaches are the least of your worries. Long-term bruxism can cause painful damage to your teeth, including enamel erosion and eventual fractures. You can even damage existing crowns, implants, or fillings with the strength of your bite.
A cracked tooth or crown replacement isn’t something you can ignore for long. These painful emergencies require urgent care, and when you finally get it, it can cost you a lot more than a preventative visit.
How would you handle an unexpected root canal or crown repair? If money’s tight enough that you avoid the dentist, there’s a good chance you don’t have the savings to handle this cost. Luckily, you can still get the care you deserve with the help of short-term personal loans.
Short term personal loans may give you the upfront cash you need to take care of your teeth, so you don’t have to put your health on hold. Many of them come with flexible repayment options, which lets you pay off what you owe over time rather than in one lump sum. For more information on how short-term personal loans work, visit a website like MoneyKey in your time of need.
You can also ask your dentist about any help they’re willing to give you. Some dental clinics have payment plans available that let you pay off your bill in installments. Depending on the agreement, you may not even need a personal loan to cover your emergency.
Talk to Your Dentist about Bruxism
Don’t ignore your teeth grinding until it’s too late. Talk to your dentist about preventative measures you can take now. They may prescribe a nightguard, medication, and behavioral strategies to help you unclench at night. These early interventions almost always cost less than an emergency visit, saving you time, pain, and money.