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Ask Dr. Arun Phophalia Your Own Question
Dr. Arun Phophalia
Dr. Arun Phophalia, Doctor (MD)
Category: Health
Satisfied Customers: 34717
Experience:  MBBS, MS (General Surgery), Fellowship in Sports Medicine
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I hum unconsciously (and grind my teeth) when

Customer Question

I hum unconsciously (and grind my teeth) when concerned...on various antidepressants.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Health
Expert:  Dr. Anil replied 1 year ago.


Since how long have you been suffering from?

Do you grind teeth while sleeping?

Waiting for your response.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
A L O N G time; thought it was antidepressants, but doc switched from Nuvigil to Provigil. Have sleep apnea (grind at night), type 1 diabetes since 1966, and have inflammatory "things" going on (take Asacol plus anti-rejection medication). After switch to Provigil, still humming and grinding while driving (example), working at home...(unconsciously) all the time...and at work.
Teeth problems and embarrassment at people hearing me humming.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
If I knew what the problem was, I could see a doctor about it, but I don't know what the "problem" is, why I have that behavior.
Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 1 year ago.


I am Dr. Arun and will be helping you today.

I am sorry that your question was unanswered for long.

The common causes of humming and grinding are;

A) Acid reflux

B) Allergic sinusitis

C) Anxiety.

For treating allergic sinusitis naturally; steam inhalation, nasal saline water (salt water) irrigation (can be done by Neti-pot), Vitamin C, Eucalyptus oil inhalation can be done, apart from avowing the allergen .

Grinding of teeth is called as Bruxism. The causes can be;

1) Upper and lower teeth are not aligned.

2) Acid reflux

3) Genetic predisposition,

4) Tiny arousals occurring during sleep (sleep apnea can be the causative),

5) psychological factors such as distress and anxiety,

6) Medications or drug effects (stimulatory drugs: ecstasy, caffeine, or serotonin reuptake inhibitors, anxiolytic medication, or dopaminergic drugs, etc), and

7) It may be consider a natural behavior that stimulates salivation during sleep.

The treatment is dependent on the cause. Your medications may be responsible or for aggravating it, if was present earlier. Following measures may be recommended;

1) Occlusion splints wore at the night time.

2) Medications;

a) bromocriptine

b) pergolide

c) benzodiazepine and muscle relaxant drugs

d) botulinum toxin A

3) Relaxation strategies;

a) meditation,

b) hypnosis,

c) guided imagery,

d) cognitive behavioral intervention,

e) deep breathing exercises

f) yoga and

g) biofeedback.

If you have known gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) / acid reflux, following measures would be helpful;

1) antacids; Maalox

2) acid blocker; Prilosec

3) loosing weight, if overweight.

4) avoiding alcohol, citrus fruits and juices, chocolate, and tomato based products

5) avoiding large meals. Eat 5 small meals in a day.

6) wait three hours after the meal before you sleep.

7) elevate head end of the bed by 8 inches.

You may get the following investigations done to rule out acid reflux;

i) Upper gastrointestinal endoscopy

ii) 23 hours esophageal pH estimation

iii) Esophageal manometry.

Please feel free for your follow up questions.

I would be happy to assist you further, if you need any more information.

Thanks for using Just Answer.

Expert:  Dr. Arun Phophalia replied 1 year ago.

It is privilege assisting you.
Please let me know if you have further queries or unanswered questions.

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Thank you.