A night guard is a custom-fitted dental appliance that protects your teeth from excessive wear and tear. It also helps you and your family get better sleep. If you suffer from chronic jaw pain or headaches, a night guard is the perfect solution to your night-grinding problems.
At Soothing Dental Care in Richmond, Virginia, Dr. Juan M. Carrillo and our team of compassionate providers want to keep your mouth healthy. We provide the highest quality service in a gentle and caring atmosphere. Our experts understand that constant teeth grinding can impact your oral health and overall wellness. That’s why we create customized night guards to help you sleep better and maintain proper oral hygiene.
Night guards are important not only for oral health but also for your general well-being. Teeth grinding, also called bruxism, can ruin sleep and be the source of major tooth problems.
Night guards prevent your teeth from grinding against each other while you sleep. It’s also possible you find yourself grinding your teeth and clenching your jaw throughout your day when you’re not paying attention. If you excessively grind your teeth, the protective coating called enamel will eventually wear down or disappear.
When enamel completely erodes from a tooth, it becomes painful. There’s no longer a layer of protection over that tooth, which leads to other problems like cavities and infection. Unfortunately, once the enamel is gone, it cannot be replaced. It doesn’t regenerate, and no medicine fixes it. Thankfully you can protect your teeth and prevent enamel erosion simple by wearing a night guard.
If you often have pain or soreness in your jaw, you probably grind your teeth at night. Teeth grinding causes your jaw muscles to tense, resulting in soreness in not only your jaw but also your neck and face.
Constant teeth grinding can lead to painful issues like temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. This disorder is a group of conditions that leads to jaw pain and joint dysfunction. Your TMJ connects your skull to your lower jaw. It’s the joint that allows you to open and close your mouth. The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR) estimates that over 10 million Americans suffer from a TMJ disorder. Because this disorder can become painful if not treated, the NIDCR recommends a night guard for pain relief.
Bruxism and chronic jaw clenching can lead to facial changes. As with any muscle group, your jaw muscles will grow if you continually clench your jaw. This creates an overly squared appearance in the jaw. Additionally, bruxism leads to premature aging of your face and a loss of facial volume.
It’s also possible that excessive teeth grinding can lead to tooth loss. Untreated bruxism can cause fracturing or loosening of teeth, eventually leading to tooth loss. Missing teeth also change the shape of your face over time if not treated.
It’s crucial that you have a night guard custom-fitted for your mouth. Drug store night guards don’t offer the proper amount of protection your teeth need. They’re also ill-fitting and will probably be uncomfortable, unlike a custom appliance. Make sure you get a night guard that’s made just for you so that you’re more likely to use it every night.
Don’t waste another night grinding away at your teeth. You only have one chance to protect them, so contact our office right away to make an appointment.