If you’re among the 10-15% of adults who grind their teeth as they sleep, you might benefit from wearing a comfortable custom night guard appliance. At Angel Dentistry in Phoenix, Arizona, Amber Angel, DDS, and her team design and create custom night guards that fit securely over your teeth to protect them from damage related to bruxism. To discuss getting a night guard with Dr. Angel and her team, call Angel Dentistry or request an appointment online today.
Night Guard Q & A
What is a night guard?
A night guard is a custom appliance available for your teeth at Angel Dentistry. Dr. Angel instructs you to wear a night guard as you sleep to prevent tooth damage that comes from unconscious teeth grinding. Grinding your teeth incessantly, especially during sleep, is called bruxism.
Night guards are simple appliances: they’re crafted from a comfortable and durable clear plastic that acts as a cushion between your upper and lower rows of teeth. There are several different types of night guards, and Dr. Angel can help you select the right one for you:
Soft night guard
If you grind your teeth only mildly or on occasion, Dr. Angel may recommend a soft night guard. It’s made of a soft, comfortable plastic and lasts for about six months until you need a new one.
Dual laminate night guard
If you’re a moderate teeth grinder, Dr. Angel may recommend a dual laminate night guard. This type feels soft on the inside but has a solid outer layer that allows them to last longer than soft night guards.
Hard night guard
Hard night guards are reserved for severe teeth grinders. These guards are rigid, which can make them hard to adjust to, but they can ease temporomandibular joint pain that results from long-term bruxism.
Snore guards are appliances that conform to your upper dental arch and prevent the jaw from receding. Changing your jaw’s position when you sleep keeps the air passage in your throat open, improves airflow, and reduces snoring.
What are the benefits of using a night guard?
Obtaining and wearing a night guard consistently can help you reduce or avoid the symptoms of teeth grinding. Teeth grinding can cause:
- Enamel wear
- Tooth sensitivity
- Tooth breakage
- Tooth loss
- Jaw pain
- Ear pain
- Frequent headaches
- Lack of sleep
Teeth grinding often comes from stress, anxiety, cigarette use, caffeine use, and other factors. Dr. Angel may encourage you to make some lifestyle changes to reduce your bruxism in addition to wearing a night guard. Treating the problem early can help you avoid costly dental work in the future.
What’s the difference between an over-the-counter night guard and a professional night guard?
The night guards that Dr. Angel offers at Angel Dentistry differ from what you’re going to find at the drugstore. Dr. Angel takes impressions of your teeth to ensure an exact fit and uses high-quality materials to make your night guard. Over-the-counter night guards require you to boil them and bite down on them in order to help them fit.
To learn more about night guards and how they can help halt your nighttime teeth grinding habit, call Angel Dentistry or request an appointment online today.