Evidence suggests that people who are stressed by daily occurrences, work problems, relationship problems, etc. are more likely to grind their teeth at night. The research is present in the journal Head and Face Medicine. They studied the causes of ‘sleep bruxism’,which is grinding teeth during the night, and found it to be more common in those with are dealing with stressful situations.
In one study there were 69 people, of whom 48 were ‘bruxers’. Maria Giraka who worked with the researchers said “Bruxing can lead to abrasive tooth wear, looseness and sensitivity of teeth, and growth and pain in the muscles responsible for chewing. Its causes are still relatively unknown, but stress has been implicated. We aimed to investigate whether different stress-factors, and different coping strategies, were more or less associated with these bruxism symptoms.”
Thin plates were placed in trial participants mouths’ overnight to measure teeth grinding. Stress was measured by asking participants a series of questions. Bruxing was more common in people who claimed to experience daily stress and trouble at work.
Source: Maria Giraki, Christine Schneider, Ralf Schäfer, Preeti Singh, Matthias Franz, Wolfgang H.-M Raab and Michelle A Ommerborn. Correlation between stress, stress-coping and current sleep bruxism. Head & Face Medicine, 2010.