Teeth grinding, or bruxism, can be from several causes, two of which you already mentioned.
Parasites – teeth grinding can be a sign of pinworms , quite common, or roundworms, a bit less common. This is often more the case with children, but as all adults also have parasites, everyone is wise to do a parasite cleanse once or twice a year anyways, to keep these little critters in balance.
Some people think that we only pick up parasites when travelling; this is NOT true. I have had cases of roundworms, tapeworms and amoebas with clients who have never left Canada. But we DO encourage a parasite cleanse after travelling to tropical countries. Historically, people did cleanses every spring, whether by choice or natural selection – edible plants (weeds) such as dandelion, nettles, burdock, yellow dock, and other bitters may have been the only food available in springtime. And most have heard of the castor oil treatment from Grandma – same idea – clean out that bowel! For ideas that are easier than either of these, please refer to past articles:
Nerves and Stress can cause teeth grinding. Stress depletes many vitamins and minerals such as Vitamins B’s & C’s, Zinc & Magnesium, which are all required for healthy nervous system. Muscle tension is a result. When one sleeps, the muscles of the jaw will often express this stress, resulting in grinding. To test if this is the problem, one can use something like Stress Pak for 1 month and evaluate.
An exercise which a biological dentist gave me years ago to help prevent this is: before going to sleep clench your jaw together and hold for 5-10 seconds, then slowly release. Do this at least 3 times. In simplified terms, he said this sends a message to the brain that tells it you have done the clenching, now relax. I think it is a it like isometrics. As I did not like the feel of clenching my teeth without some protection, I purchased an inexpensive mouth guard, available in a local hockey store. This is the type you put in boiling water and mold to your teeth. You can also go to sleep with this in place; it may not stay there long, but seemed to help.
Herbals treatments that help relax muscles and promote sleep can be taken before bedtime. Some that we find particularly helpful are: Magnesium, plus Nervous System Pack (US)/ or Eight (CA), OR Herbal Sleep (US) / HVP (CA). Contact us to order any of these with a direct discount.
TMJ or Temporomandiblular Joint being out of position can contribute to grinding. This may also be related to stress. Two certifications I have that help with this: CRA, Contact Reflex Analysis, which some chiropractors have, is used to test and correct this. TMJ Re-set is another, which makes a huge difference to people in overall posture, neck mobility, clarity of thinking and more. The TMJ has extensive implications for our health. Some body or energy workers, such as cranial sacral therapists may be helpful.
Dental misalignments can be another cause. I would check out the previous 3 possibilities first, unless you have a good dental plan. Misalignments can be due to fillings or teeth being too high or low, underlying infections, root canals, jaw positioning, probably other things that only a dentist can tell you. Dentists can also make a professionally fitted mouthguard that one wears all night. This can prevent further damage to teeth caused by the grinding, but may not be addressing the underlying cause(s).
Hope this helps; if not contact us for further information.