Protect your Teeth with a Night Guard
What is a Night Guard?
Several adults and children suffer from bruxism or what is most commonly known as teeth grinding. Teeth grinding not only causes pain and annoys your partner who is trying to sleep peacefully but also puts your oral health at risk. Constant grinding can harm the enamel coating of the teeth, cause pain in the jaws and give you a headache. The night guard relaxes the jaw muscles and helps in proper alignment. It acts like a soft armor for the teeth so you can grind your night guard without hurting your teeth.
Bruxism occurs when you are sleeping and it can also result from psychological stressors. A lot of times people are unaware of their teeth clenching or grinding habits. It could be because no one told them but your dentist will best inform you whether or not you have bruxism.
The night guard is made of plastic matter and as the name suggests it literally guards your teeth at night. It is normally placed to support the upper or lower row of teeth or both. It reduces the bruising caused by clenching or grinding of the teeth by acting like a protective membrane. It will protect your teeth against the teeth grinding odds like chipping or cracking of your tooth. Sports players also use it as they frequently come in physical contact with other players or the ground, which can cause fractures or mouth injuries. It is also worn by those patients who already have an orthodontic appliance like braces.
Where will I get a Night Guard?
You can get a night guard from a nearby pharmacy store but if you want a much comfortable night guard, then you can ask your dentist to develop a custom one. The dentist will take the teeth impressions of the patient and send it to the dental lab where the customized night guard is made. Nowadays with digital technology, you can get your night guard by sending your teeth impressions and placing an order for it online.
What are the different kinds of Night Guards?
The material used inside the night guard is what distinguishes the different night guards.
- There is the boil and bite mouth guard. To use it, first you must boil it and let it cool and then bite it gradually to your teeth's shape.
- No-boil and Stock mouth guards are the ready to wear type. They are not expensive but at the same time, they are not very adjustable. Dentists usually do not recommend it. It makes breathing uncomfortable and does not provide much protection to the teeth.
How do I know if a Night Guard is good?
Good night guards are comfortable and they provide a barrier to teeth clenching. They are easy to clean, durable and prevents dental issues caused by bruxism. After a while, the teeth grinding won't be an issue and you can take it off but then it’s important to find a night guard that fights you properly.
Dr. Tracy Ngo at Stevens Creek Dentistry in Santa Clara helps you find the right night guard. To guard your teeth against bruxism, set up an appointment with Dr. Ngo at 408-261-8882!