Can lucid dreaming help with nocturnal bruxism or teeth clenching?

I’m a clencher, and have used a special NTI nightguard with success for many years. It makes the clenching less intense but does not eliminate it entirely.

Does anyone else here have this and has lucid dreaming been able to help? If you could become lucid while dreaming maybe you could stop clenching your teeth.

Well, i think you could try and make the clenching a dreamsign? Do you get related dreams of it, like your teeth hurt or something?

if that is so, you can tell yourself before going to sleep that whenever you notice a clench related dreamsign you will realize you are dreaming, and then can try and relax. Or ask the dream why you are clenching and how you can make it stop.

i don’t get direct signs of it normally. i’m not sure which phase of sleep bruxism occurs in but i’ll check this out. maybe it occurs as general stress level or dreaming about something stressful.

for a few weeks this year i temporarily switched to a special biofeedback nightguard called cycura oral sensor. it would set off a beeping noise in your ear when you clenched. the idea was to wake you up and get you to stop. the beeping volume was not configurable, but the clenching pressure at which it was activated was. it seemed to reduce clenching at first but then i just started sleeping through it. i decided to switch back to the NTI nightguard which works great for reducing the intensity of clenching but doesn’t give you any cues. My dentist wasn’t happy with the idea of a soft nightguard (the oral sensor is soft, and i started using it myself as an experiment before telling my dentist).

i guess you would have to be a real expert at lucid dreaming to use it to control clenching. you’d have to reach lucidity in every dream.

oh! did the beeping show up in your dream? you could use it as an exellent LD trigger, instead of waking up from it!

Well, what i was thinking of is more that you could use your LD’s to figure out what causes the clenching, and work with that :smile: So with becoming aware of the clenching in a dream, you could find out why you do it, or find a way to lessen it. It wouldn’t mean you would have to become lucid every night to control it.

Anyhow, that beeping thing sounds like a great aid to become lucid while clenching; too bad your dentist doesn’t approve :sad: Maybe there are others that beep that your dentist will approve of?


I’m a lucid dreamer and a clencher too. I also study dentistry. We had a course of neurology last year, and I learned that clenching belongs to a group of parasomnias (sleepwalking and enuresis are parasomnias too). And parasomnias happen only during NREM. So you probably don’t clench your teeth during REM-state and during dreams.
So lucid dreaming probably wont help you with your bruxism. It hasn’t helped me at all.

:smile: Offtopic: But great thing you got the nightguard. I’ve seen horrible teeth that are only a few millimeter long, because the patient hasn’t done anything to his/her problem and has clenched his teeth away.

I went to the doctor because this was happening to me as well. They made me bite into a metal plate to test the amount of force i was applying during sleep. I bit through the metal plate. Dentist said if i was pissed off i could probably bite through a car door. I haven’t used a mouthguard and it’s stopped - seemed to be largely related to stress. A change of lifestyle may help.

Wow, I feel lucky to find a dental student and clencher and lucid dreamer here!

I’ve been using nightguards of various types for 10 years.

~2 years full soft splint - didn’t help much

~3 years full arch hard acrylic splint - helped somewhat but i would still clench on it pretty hard

last 5 years - NTI appliance. This is the special nightguard that prevents molars from touching and triggers a reflex that reduces clenching intensity. It works much better than anything else I have tried.

a couple weeks earlier this year - I tried the cycura oral sensor which is a soft nightguard that hooks up to an earpiece you wear, and sounds a beeping noise in your ear when you clench. I think i mentioned earlier that it worked at first but I started sleeping through it, or at least, by the time it would wake me up, I had already been clenching pretty hard.

I guess the traditional nightguards protect your teeth if nothing else, but they don’t reduce the intensity of clenching for most people (for me anyway…).

I gave up caffeine a few months ago but it doesn’t seem to have much effect. I guess I’m just wired wrong, and I’ll have to use a nightguard of some sort for the rest of my life.

Too bad that clenching doesn’t occur during the sleep phase that lucid dreaming could help it.

danm just as i wasnt aware of it until this thread came up, but i’ve ground off the cement/enamel stuff they painted onto my teeth off again. looks like its nother trip to the dentist for sandblasting abrasion and reshaping :sad:

you might ask the doc/dentist about a nightguard. if you have ever had jaw popping or similar symptoms you might look at the NTI (it has helped me).

Here’s a research study excerpt i found with google that indicates that bruxism occurs in REM and non-REM sleep

“Bruxism episodes were equally distributed between non-REM and REM sleep, but were more frequent in stages 1 and 2 (p < 0.0001) than in slow-wave sleep” … t=Abstract

my grinding isn’t anywhere near as severe now as i’ve found suitable outlets for my emotions/stress.
my jaw never pops, never had a filling or problem (Except this) with teeth in my life, so it’s not worth bothering about. :smile: but ill keep it in mind if i go insane again!