Getting the right amount of sleep is vital. Not only does it allow you to function well during the day, but your sleeping time is also when your body restores itself. Sleeping and oral health issues are intricately related. If snoring, sleep apnea, bruxism, or something else is waking you up several times during the night, making it challenging to feel well-rested, your dentist might suggest a night guard or sleep apnea appliance that will improve your sleeping pattern.
What is a Night Guard?
A night guard, or mouth guard, is a removable oral appliance that fits over your teeth and helps keep your jaw muscles relaxed and prevents tooth damage caused by grinding and clenching in your sleep. Certain appliances can also improve or completely cure snoring by opening the airway plus allow more oxygen to flow through your airway. Contact Smile Solutions if you have any of the above symptoms and we will be more than happy to customize the right appliance depending on your needs.
What are Night Guards Used For?
Night guards are used for a few different reasons.
- Prevent damage: If you clench or grind your teeth while sleeping, your teeth get worn down. A night guard keeps your teeth safer. You will have less enamel erosion, so your teeth won’t be sensitive to hot and cold. You’ll also protect your fillings and restorations from damage. After prolonged teeth grinding, the wear can lead to broken teeth and even tooth loss. Usually, we only choose the upper or lower arch and a custom impression is taken that will improve the fit and longevity of the appliance.
- Protect against TMJ disorders: Your TMJ is the hinge joint of your jaw. If this joint is not working correctly, it can cause damage to your teeth. A custom night guard can help treat the root cause of your TMJ disorder.
- Prevent headaches: You may also wake up with a headache or jaw soreness if you are clenching or grinding your teeth due to bruxism or a TMJ disorder. A night guard can help your facial muscles relax, preventing headaches and relieving jaw joint pain.
- Prevent snoring: If you snore loudly, you may wake yourself up and keep others awake, too. Night guards can hold your mouth in a certain position to keep you from snoring and also allowing more oxygen to enter your airway.
- Prevent obstructive sleep apnea: If something is getting in the way of your airflow while you sleep, you may have obstructive sleep apnea. This wakes you up frequently during the night and causes other symptoms. A night guard can support your jaw in such a way that you will be able to breathe freely during the night.
Are Over-the-Counter Dental Appliances Right for You?
Over-the-counter dental appliances, including night guards, may be cheaper than your dentist’s custom dental appliances, but they have some significant risk factors. These night guards are not made for your mouth. If a boil and bite night guard fits poorly, it could cause more damage to your teeth or most likely will not have enough retention to stay in the mouth during the night hours. . Over-the-counter dental appliances are not used under the supervision of a doctor, which means you don’t get the benefit of a professional keeping an eye on your teeth, gums, and jaw.
At Smile Solutions of Maine, we strongly recommend only using custom-fitted nightguards you get from your dentist. Benefits of a custom night guard include a comfortable fit, better pain relief, and maximum durability. To make your night guard, we take an impression of your teeth and send it off to a professional dental lab for fabrication. Once it’s ready, you’ll come back in so we can make sure it’s the perfect fit and make any adjustments if necessary.
Custom-Made Night Guards for Sleep Apnea
If you have sleep apnea, trust your dentist to give you a customized night guard that will fit your mouth perfectly. Different people have different needs, which means your mouth may need to be supported in another way than someone else. We will create the right night guard for your unique sleep apnea condition.
Your customized night guard will be part of a sleep apnea treatment plan that your dentist creates. You can feel better knowing we are professionally taking care of your issues so that you can enjoy better health and better sleep.
Choose the Experts at Smile Solutions of Maine to Create a Custom Night Guard for You
The entire Smile Solutions of Maine staff in Waterville and Winthrop, Maine, are dedicated to your oral health. We use our extensive knowledge and resources to give you personalized treatments, including custom dental night guards that fit your mouth and do everything they are supposed to do. Get the help you need. Schedule a consultation to talk to a dentist about custom night guards.