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Night guards are often recommended to patients for many reasons. Regardless of the rationale behind the recommendation, using a night guard will help to protect your teeth from severe damage, such as teeth clenching and grinding. These appliances are often the best way to minimize painful symptoms and achieve superior relief.
Preventing Tooth Damage
One of the more critical benefits of wearing a night guard is to prevent tooth damage. The habit of nightly unconscious grinding and clenching of the teeth while you sleep can result in teeth that become chipped or broken. Damaged fillings or extreme sensitivity due to excessive enamel wear are some of the other adverse side effects of teeth clenching or grinding. Wearing a custom-fit night hard can prevent this type of damage from occurring by reducing the impact teeth grinding or clenching may have on your smile.
Headaches are just one of the many discomforts that come with TMD (temporomandibular disorders). Night guards make a tremendous difference when it comes to these everyday aches and pains. Many people are surprised that after using a night guard consistently, they can experience fewer or no temporal headaches or associated neck pain.
Alleviate Tension and Pain
Cases of bruxism and temporomandibular disorders, more commonly known as TMD or TMJ, are often associated with headaches, toothaches and pain, and tooth sensitivity. The symptoms of TMD and TMJ also include:
- A sore or tender jaw
- Muscle fatigue
- Neck pain
- Muscle spasms
Wearing a custom night guard can help to manage these symptoms and alleviate common joint pain. A custom night guard can also help to manage TMJ-related jaw pain by aligning your teeth and bite appropriately while you sleep.
Improves Your Sleep
Wearing a custom night guard can help to manage the symptoms of bruxism or jaw pain and minimize associated pain and discomfort all while improving your sleep patterns. A night guard can be used to correctly position your jaw in a manner that promotes muscle relaxation, allowing the stress in your jaw to be reduced. Night guards provide a sense of relief for many patients all while resting.
A custom night guard can be designed to keep your jaws slightly apart to increase air intake and improve breathing while you sleep. Snoring at night can often be a direct link to teeth clenching and grinding.
Saving Money in the Long-Term
Tooth damage caused by the unconscious nightly grinding and clenching of your teeth and jaw tends to be quite costly. Teeth clenching slowly but surely destroy your teeth over the years and when this happens, restorative dental treatments are required. These cosmetic and restorative treatments are necessary for both aesthetic and functionality purposes. Investing in a night guard means saving money later in restorative dentistry.
Finding the Right Fit
From alleviating pain and headaches to preventing tooth damage, it is apparent that dental night guards can improve the quality of your sleep and your life. However, all mouth guards are not created equal. Over-the-counter night guards are not designed for the shape of your teeth and mouth, meaning they do not give the same protection to the jaw joints and muscles that custom night guards can.
Getting a custom night guard is a simple process, and often requires two visits to the dentist. The first visit will consist of an examination and necessary measurements to create a mold of your teeth and jaw. The second visit will be to receive your night guard and to ensure a proper fit. Contact Aubrey Baudean DDS to discuss if a mouth guard can help to address your sleep concerns.