Seems it not just our finances which are cracking under the Credit Crunch … so are our teeth.
Quite often clients mention to us in the course of conversation that, quite separate from the reason they have come to see us, they know they have a tendency to clench their teeth.
Frequently they become aware of this not from personal observation but due to their spouses or partners complaining bitterly about the noise they make grinding their teeth while asleep.
Teeth grinding, whether while awake or asleep, is known as bruxism, and can cause all sorts of dental problems including wearing down, chipping or flattening or loosening teeth to earache and the contraction of jaw muscles.
Sleep bruxism and many instances of Awake bruxism is an unconscious, involuntary behaviour and can be a really.
Now, according to some dentists, there has been a noticeable surge as a resulted of the added anxieties created by the current financial nightmares.
Details of the problem appeared in the Guardian with a report on how dentists were recording increases in patients whose teeth have started to crack – sometimes beyond repair – as a result of this unconscious grinding.
The Guardian’s Health correspondent Denis Campbell explains that stress-related teeth grinding is causing people to have to take painkillers every day to relieve their symptoms and is even damaging their working life.
The paper quotes implant dental specialist Sharif Khan as saying: "People who are worst affected by grinding are Type A personalities: ambitious people and perfectionists, who usually work in business."
According to Edinburgh dentist Yann Maidment the dental consequences of the Credit Crunch has become very apparent within the financial sector. He and his colleagues reckon the numbers of patients affected by bruxism has risen by up to a fifth - especially among those in Edinburgh’s banks, fund managers and financial services firms.
"There's a lot of anxiety that redundancies may be coming, and about job losses that have already happened," says Maidment.
What do dentists do about bruxism? Often they merely provide bite guards which patients are supposed to bung in their mouths at night while they sleep – at a cost of between £250 to £300 a time.
There is though a better solution – and as we’re hypnotherapists, you’ve probably guessed that the answer is hypnotherapy. And you’d be right. Hypnotherapy can really help to deal with the underline causes of bruxism; the stress, the anxiety … and in many cases, the unresolved anger. You can learn more at our website by clicking on the Therapy Partnership website
Well, that’s something to chew on.