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Cancer deaths fall; teeth grinding

Cancer deaths have fallen for American men and women from most racial and ethnic groups. Ever wake up with a sore jaw or a headache? You might be grinding your teeth in your sleep.
Cancer deaths have fallen for American men and women from most racial and ethnic groups. That's according to an annual report by the CDC.

The report shows the most significant declines in deaths in lung, colorectal, breast and prostate cancer.

Researches credit the decline in part to fewer people smoking and better treatment for the most common cancers.

However, there has been an increase in death rates from melanoma for men and uterine cancer death rates for women.

Teeth grinding

Ever wake up with a sore jaw or a headache? You might be grinding your teeth in your sleep.

If left untreated, teeth grinding - can do some real damage.

Bobby ward is in his early 30's but his teeth tell a different story. He grinds them, so they are now worn down beyond their years.

"I noticed that I have damage to particularly my lower teeth from grinding them at night and muscle soreness in the mornings."

Bruxism, or teeth grinding or clenching, may be caused by stress, misaligned or missing teeth, or sleep problems.

"There’s two types of bruxism. There's some people who just clench. They just bring their teeth together and they just clench. And then there's other people that do a combination, clenching and then grinding."

Because it often happens at night, many patients aren't aware of the habit until they start feeling symptoms such as teeth pain, jaw soreness and headaches.

"I tell my patients basically our teeth are like glass. And with grinding that occurs on a daily basis, it can cause severe damage to teeth, creating stress fractures."

Managing stress may help some patients but many, like bobby, may also need a custom made mouth guard that's worn at night.

Also remember to see a dentist regularly, so the problem can be caught early.

In some cases, chronic teeth grinding can result in a fracturing, loosening, or loss of teeth. The chronic grinding may wear the teeth down to stumps. When these events happen, bridges, crowns, root canals, implants, partial dentures, and even complete dentures may be needed.

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