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Your holiday stress may be leading to what could be an expensive dental problem.
Dentists say more patients come in this time of year with signs of teeth grinding, directly related to increased stress during the holiday.
Even though police officer Chad Barfknecht has a stressful job, he deals with holiday stress, just like everyone else.
"Our call load is a lot different around Christmas time, so it does get more stressful for us," said Barfknecht.
He didn't think much of it, until his visited Dr. Melissa Santilli of Honey Dental.
"We were constantly having to do work, crowns, fillings, doing different things," said Barfknecht.
Turns out, he was grinding his teeth at night so frequently, they started to break.
"I wasn't aware that I was. I obviously have a stressful job and don't feel that I'm stressed," he said.
"During the holidays, I notice people are complaining more and more of joint pain around their jaw joint, as well as sleeping issues," said Santilli.
Santelli says the other signs you're grinding your teeth are heat and cold sensitivity, headaches, a stiff neck and feeling tired from a bad night's sleep.
The problem can be temporary or it can be chronic.
A few fills can fix cracked or chipped teeth.
"But if they wait until the teeth are becoming shorter and shorter, where a third of the half of the tooth is still there, then they might be considering porcelain replacements," said Dr. Santilli.
That's an expensive fix but was the best option Barfknecht, who now can smile with confidence.
"To have the security and safety, to know that it's something should last 20 to 30 years," he said.
Santilli says grinding can be a sign of a bigger medical problem, or a side effect of medication.
You should talk to your doctor if that's the case.