glad you finally got to try Grindcare. Hope it works for you. I never even bought the headband with audible alarm, for 2 reasons: first, I figured that if it was loud enough to interrupt my bruxing, it would not be very good for my husband to have to endure listening to an alarm all night. Secondly, I figured that if it interrupts my bruxing, it must be doing it by waking me up all night, which didn't sound like it would give me restorative sleep. Your experience with it turning itself off after you ignore the audible alarm sounds very plausible to me.
I really hope that Grindcare works for you like it did for me. At least it has the double blind testing and gold standard EMG, so you know that you get a definitive diagnosis of TMD-or-not, which is something that TMJ sufferers have always had to guess about until portable nightly EMG. Now the question is, will the optional biofeedback mode work for you, like it did for me. If you understood the directions, you should be able to track how well you respond to the biofeedback stim, because the EMG readings should change over a number of days, until your number of times bruxing each night is demonstrably reduced.
I don't know what to tell you that I haven't already written about, especially since I am neither a Grindcare expert nor a salesperson...I can't even tell you how to buy it, and it IS expensive, and it's not as simple as popping in a mouthguard. The only thing I can suggest to you is that you do your own research on Grindcare, as I did. By doing searches and reading up on the technology, I decided that it was worth buying, even though I would have uch preferred to rent it from a dentist.
Before Grindcare came out, I used 3 full vials of Botox, atrophying my masseter muscles until my cheeks fell down, and it was not worth it at all, because my TMD simply went on to recruit whatever muscles possible to resume bruxing. This happens because TMD is a chronic neuromuscular 'unconscious twitch.' It is a destructive activity no longer associated with whatever stressors or hormonal changes or pain or other original events caused the habit to form. So treating yourself for stress reduction might be good for you, but if you have TMD, it won't reverse it, even if stress triggered the habit to form. Since no doctor can Botox you to the point of being unable to chew food, that means that Botox, like muscle relaxants, can give you temporary relief at best. And, unlike muscle relaxants, Botox causes lasting problems, like the atrophy, migration of the Botox, and possible sensory nerve problems (Amgen hasn't paid for any studies to try to quantify such effects, of course, since they are making a killing selling Botox for off-label use). Also, it is the FDA that has refused to approve Botox for bruxing, not a New York state licensing issue, for the reasons above. Anyone who tells you it is just awaiting licensing status is at best mis-informed, and at worst, looking for the revenue stream of quickie injections that are legally off-label. I forced my doctor to Botox me since I was disabled by pain, had developed tolerance to muscle relaxants, and there was simply nothing like Grindcare yet. If I were you, I would use muscle relaxants before Botox, if you can't do Grindcare. The one case where muscle relaxants be contra-indicated is if you have sleep apnea.
Diagnosing by trying out possible treatments, sometimes invasive ones, has been necessary for TMD suffererers until Grindcare. TMD isn't the only chronic condition diagnosed by elimination, either, but TMD can be definitively diagnosed and tracked by EMG. Even mouthguards that are only a couple of milimeters thick add to fulcrum pressure at the TMjoint, although mouthguards can protect expensive dental work that bruxers might ruin. Diagnosing by trying treatments is like shooting in the dark; sometimes you just have to hope you'll get lucky and get a result better than the status quo. If there were any other nano sized EMG, with biofeedback (stim) to interrupt bruxing, without disturbing one's sleep, I would like to think I'd have found it and tried it already. So, I am not plugging Grindcare. I am plugging the 'gold standard' techonology of EMG. And Grindcare's size and optional stim are ingenious. Good luck whatever you try. TMD can become debilitating if you start damaging the TMjoint and surrounding nerves, so I am glad to hear that your worst problem so far is only overdeveloped masseter muscles - I used to like to pout with mine, because the effect became more dramatic the more decades I bruxed! And I was fine until I wrecked my TMjoint, so long as I used a mouthguard.
Sometimes definitive diagnosis like EMG proves that someone DOESN'T have a bruxing problem, which can be very disconcerting to anyone who has invested years on various bruxism treatments. I saw a woman with migraines who thought she was a bruxer find out she has to start the lengthy and often tedious process of testing out different migraine prevention drugs (with their side effects), which was not very fun for her. I have also seen some dentists who have specialized in bruxism treatments and devices very frustrated to find that EMG is proving to be the gold standard. But I have also had dentists ask me if they could buy my Grindcare unit from me for their own bruxism.
Anyways, do your own research - at least there is a lot you can read from the English speaking countries where Grindcare is already available to rent or buy. Too bad that a product that has been approved by our FDA for so long is not yet available on Amazon.com or at your local USA dental office. Until then, I have stocked up on a year's worth of disposable gel pads, and extra leads, since the time I yanked the wire loose in my sleep on the first one, over a period of a couple of weeks, until it had a bad connection.