Night guards are a valuable tool that can help improve your sleep and your oral health at the same time. By protecting enamel, night guards can help you avoid other disorders and tooth sensitivity. Mouthguards can be a common part of a comprehensive dental plan that helps patients of all ages have strong teeth into adulthood.
Consistent use of a mouthguard is the most effective way to prevent further oral issues from occurring. Managing dental issues is made easier when you implement the help of a night guard.
Reasons To Use A Mouthguard
Every patient is unique, so the reasons to utilize a mouthguard can vary. Some people are afflicted with teeth grinding or have genetic conditions that affect their jaw. Here are some common reasons you may need a night guard from Sunset Dental Care.
Grinding teeth during the day or night is also referred to as bruxism. Teeth grinding can wear down your enamel leading to more cavities or tooth sensitivity. It can also cause jaw pain or gum irritation. Wearing a night guard while you are unconsciously grinding your teeth can provide a barrier between the upper and lower teeth to prevent the loss of tooth enamel.
Bruxism can also make it hard for a roommate, spouse, or partner to sleep at night. Wearing a night guard will help you and those who share a room with you by giving each person better quality sleep. Bruxism can cause stress on the body, which can make it hard for you to obtain quality sleep. Wearing the right mouthguard can help with this.
Wearing down your tooth enamel can expose more of your tooth pulp and sensitive areas of your tooth. This means you can be more susceptible to bacteria build-up and cavities. Wearing a mouth guard can prevent the loss of enamel and prevent frequent cavities.
Grinding your teeth is a common cause of sensitive teeth. If you have pain or sensitivity when drinking hot or cold drinks, or eating crunchy foods, a night guard may be able to help. While you can’t get enamel back, a night guard can help strengthen the enamel you do have and protect you from losing anymore. Your dentist may recommend sensitive toothpaste to help build back up the durability of your teeth in addition to wearing a night guard.
Prevent TMJ Disorders
Chronic Bruxism can lead to the deterioration of your jaw which causes TMJ disorders. These disorders affect the temporomandibular joint that connects your jaw to your skull. Dental night guards can help prevent deterioration and pain that can occur in the temporomandibular joint. Reducing stress on the jaw and teeth can help patients who already have TMJ as well. Reducing pressure on your teeth will help you avoid a handful of problems, including issues from TMJ.
Other Methods To Prevent Teeth Grinding
While a night guard will protect your teeth, it may not help you stop grinding your teeth altogether. Here are some tips that may help stop you from grinding your teeth.
- Avoid alcohol or drinks with caffeine
- Limit chewing gum
- Don’t chew on pens, ice, or other objects
- Massage your jaw muscles
- Increase physical activity
- Become conscious of your clenching
- Relax or unwind before bed
- Limit stress and anxiety
- Eat magnesium-rich foods or take supplements
Caring For Your Night Guard
After you have been fitted for a night guard by your dentist, you will need to wear it consistently and care for it properly. Doing so will help you get the most out of the night guard and reap all the benefits.
Regularly cleaning your guard is important to prevent infections in your mouth. Using a soft toothbrush and a mild soap or your regular toothpaste will help prevent the build-up of bacteria and plaque. You should also store the guard properly when you are not wearing it. Keep it in a protective case that keeps dust off and prevents the guard from becoming damaged. Maintaining the shape of the night guard is the only way it will help protect your teeth.
If you suspect that you are grinding your teeth or feel that the grinding is causing issues, contact our dentist at Sunset Dental Care. We can help you understand your current oral status and fit a night guard to your specific teeth. No matter what age you are, night guards can help improve your quality of life. Contact Sunset Dental to get started on your night guard as soon as possible.