What is a night guard? It is essentially a mouthguard you wear while you sleep. The purpose of a night guard is to protect your teeth from damage caused by bruxism (teeth grinding and clenching). This often occurs at night and can give you jaw pain, headaches, and it can wear, loosen, and fracture your teeth. A night guard provides a smooth surface for teeth to slide against and it cushions the mouth to prevent bruxism damage.
If you feel that you need a night guard, you may wonder what kind you should choose. There are several options for night guards, including the following:
- A stock night guard is inexpensive and can be bought at your local drug store. However, that is where the benefits end. Stock guards can’t be adjusted to fit the shape of your mouth. This not only makes them uncomfortable, but more ineffective at protecting your teeth.
- A boil and bite night guard has the price benefits of a stock guard and an adjustable fit. You simply boil the night guard material, bite down on it, and wait until it cools into the shape of your mouth.
- Custom-made night guards, though more expensive, are the best option for your teeth. They are made from acrylic and their fit is customized to your mouth. These are the most comfortable, most effective, and longest lasting kind of night guard.
To learn more about bruxism and night guards, call our practice today to set up an appointment with the dentist.