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Ask the Experts
Night guards are also available through your dentist. Guards of this type tend to be of a higher quality and superior fit, as they are made in a special laboratory from an impression of your mouth carefully taken by a dental professional.
So a dentist or someone else said that you need a nightguard. Or you think you might be grind-ing or clenching your teeth while you sleep, and you’ve wondered if wearing a nightguard could help you.
Understandably, many people are skeptical about nightguards. You might be thinking: do I really need a nightguard? Teeth grinding (bruxism) can damage enamel, wear down teeth, cause jaw pain, or irritate your gums. We recommend a night guard to protect your teeth.
What are nightguards?
A nightguard is a device placed in the mouth on top of the teeth to help with grinding and clenching. Grinding implies the moving of the jaw back and forth, while clenching is biting down with pressure for an extended period of time. The guard acts as a protective layer between your top and bottom teeth.
These devices are also called occlusal guards, occlusal splints, or bite splints. Usually, the guard is made of plastic and is placed over some or all of the upper or lower teeth. In most cas-es, guards cover only your upper teeth.
Nightguards don’t stop you from clenching or grinding, but they serve as a cushion so that your teeth wear down the guard rather than your teeth. They also give your jaw a rest while you sleep. Plus, they can help you and your sleep partner sleep better, too.
Creating Your Dental Night Guard
Once your dentist determines that you’re a good candidate for a night guard, he or she will create one that’s custom-made for your mouth. A professionally made night guard for teeth is composed of soft material and slides over one row of your teeth. Once your dental night guard is in place, you can sleep soundly knowing that even if you do grind your teeth once you’re asleep, your upper and lower teeth will no longer make contact.
Night Guard Care
A custom night guard is worn daily and like any personal care item, it requires regular cleaning to prevent damage to the appliance and growth of bacteria. Proper care and maintenance of your custom night guard will keep it in good shape for a long time, saving you time and money.