Do you sometimes wake up in the morning with your jaw aching or a headache? These symptoms may indicate that you grind your teeth at night. Our dentists at Manchester Dental Group in Manchester, VT, can help patients like you protect your teeth by prescribing night guards.
A night guard is a protective mouthpiece that you wear over your teeth while sleeping. It is like a sports mouthguard in that it prevents injuries to your teeth from clenching your jaws or grinding your teeth.
When you come into our office for a routine checkup, our dentists will be able to diagnose teeth grinding, which is also known as bruxism. Clenching the jaw or grinding wears down the cusps of the teeth, eventually flattening them.
Along with making it more difficult to tear and chew food, bruxism makes your teeth susceptible to breaking. Wearing night guards can stop tooth loss from breakage, protect the cusps of the teeth, and reduce jaw pain and headaches.
After diagnosing your bruxism, one of our dentists at Manchester Dental Group can recommend the best night guard for your needs. A night guard is also known as a bite plate, bite splint, or dental guard. Your dentist in Manchester, VT, can recommend a soft or hard night guard or a dual laminate model.
A soft night guard is for mild bruxism cases, and it is more comfortable than the other options. However, many people end up clenching them in their sleep or chewing on them, which is why most of them only have a six-month warranty.
Dual laminate night guards are for people with more moderate to severe cases of bruxism because they can withstand heavier clenching and grinding. Hard night guards are acrylic, and dentists prescribe them to people who have severe bruxism. The hard guards can be difficult to adjust to, but they can prevent teeth from shifting and breaking.
Although you can buy a dental guard over the counter in many pharmacies and stores, our dentists at Manchester Dental Group can take digital images of your mouth and customize one to fit over your teeth to protect them. If you have a bruxism diagnosis, consult our dentists in Manchester, VT, about customized night guards.