Night Guards: Your Protective Shield Against Abnormal Forces

Teeth grinding occasionally may not cause many problems, but frequent grinding can gradually affect your teeth, especially if you have cosmetic or dental devices like veneers or crowns. Fortunately, night guards offered by the family dentist in Lakeview, Chicago can protect your teeth against the adverse effects of teeth grinding. 

To help you understand night guards, here are some details regarding this dental device that you may find interesting when deciding if they suit you!

What is a night guard?

A night guard, mouth guard, or a dental split, is a special dental device made of plastic that covers all or part of your teeth. It is an appliance that is typically used through the night to prevent you from grinding your teeth (bruxism) while you are sleeping. A night guard is often fabricated using a dual laminate or plastic. The occlusal splint is a more accurate variable of the night guard that can be easily adjusted since it is made of acrylic. This can stop your teeth from contacting, which is an added benefit.

Why are night guards used?

Dentists often recommend using a night guard if you suffer from a condition known as bruxism. This causes you to grind your teeth, or clench your jaw, typically while sleeping. However, this can happen unconsciously even when you are awake or under stress. 

The main purpose of a night guard is to separate your upper and lower teeth so that they do not damage each other from the abnormal pressure of grinding or clenching.

How is a night guard fabricated?

Your dentist will first evaluate your oral cavity and record oral impressions. These impressions will be sent to the laboratory to create a plaster cast. The dental technician will fabricate night guards that are in the form of clear, plastic trays. Your dentist will give all the necessary instructions about how to use and clean them at home.

How do you clean a night guard at home?

Night guards are meant to fit your teeth accurately without causing any pain or discomfort. You are advised to wear them overnight for better results. 

Caring for your night guard

  • Clean the night guard using a soft-bristled toothbrush, and toothpaste and then rinse it with warm water.
  • You will be given an antimicrobial solution to soak your night guard to remove foreign organisms.
  • You must store your night guard in its protective case during the day.
  • Make sure the case has ventilation so it can dry and prevent the regrowth of bacteria.

If you are suffering from bruxism night guards may be the best solution to your need. They are effective and affordable with minimal maintenance, for long-lasting results.

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