On oral exam you can see worn edges and cusps of the teeth,chipped enamel,fracture lines on teeth,abfractions (loss of enamel at the gum line and gum recession.On being told that they are grinding their teeth,9 out of 10 times the answer is no I don't think so doctor coz I haven't heard my self doing it.
Bruxism or teeth grinding habit is most of the times silent unless very advanced.Of course the advanced cases will have symtoms like morning jaw muscle soreness,Pain and clicking or in severe cases dislocation of TMJ,headaches and ringing in the ears.Bruxism causes damage to the teeth slowly over a period of time so it goes unnoticed by the bruxer if its not advanced.Take a look at the pic below of a bruxer mouth.
Any pre existing oral disease progresses at a much faster rate if the patient is a bruxer for eg bone loss around the teeth due to periodontal disease may progress at a much faster rate.A lot of times patients get treatment for the effects of bruxim for eg teeth wear by fillings or big broken fillings with crowns,or bone loss with extensive gum treatment procedures.
Even before treating the effects of bruxism on your mouth the most important thing is to eliminate the root of the problem so the slow destructive process can be stopped. Wearing a night guard at night can protect your teeth and instead of pounding against each other with a force of almost 760 PSI you bite against the nightguard and protect your teeth from further damage during the night.A simple device can help avoid lot of expensive Dental treatment in future.The old saying prevention is better than cure definately holds good in this case.