Although bruxism, also known as teeth clenching or grinding, is no longer considered a disorder or disease entity per se, the excessive masticatory muscle activity and increased and prolonged tooth contact associated with it can lead to serious orofacial health problems. In addition, bruxism activity can indicate general illnesses such as obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD). In dentistry in the past, localized damage to teeth and dental restorations, abnormal tooth wear, and/or painful temporomandibular disorders (TMD) have been the main reasons for retrospectively looking for evidence of bruxism in the patient’s history and dental examinations. According to the recommendations of the current version of the “S3 Guideline: Diagnosis and Treatment of Bruxism”, published by the German Society of Dentistry and Oral Medicine (DGZMK), the signs and symptoms of current bruxism should be recorded prospectively, e.g., during the initial dental examination or before restorative treatment, to allow appropriate preventive or curative treatment planning and the identification of possible comorbidities. Here, we describe a screening instrument for awake and sleep bruxism that was developed by a working group commissioned by the board of the German Society for Craniomandibular Function and Disorders (DGFDT) based on current recommendations in the literature.
Keywords: bruxism, diagnosis, screening, TMDs