A mouth guard is a protective device for the mouth that covers all of your teeth to shield them from possible injuries. There are multiple reasons why someone would use a mouthguard, but for the purpose of this blog, we want to discuss a specific type of mouthguard called a night guard. Night guards function, as the name suggests, to give you a better night’s sleep by protecting your teeth while you snooze. They are often used as a medical solution to bruxism, more commonly known as teeth grinding, as they are able to protect the teeth and gums from the damage this condition can cause.
When choosing a night guard, there are a few types to consider:
Stock or Ready Made Mouthguards
Normally sold in drug stores, this type of mouthguard is manufactured in bulk. They come in various sizes, but they have nearly no adjustment to fit the user’s mouth. Although they are cheap, these mouth guards are often extremely uncomfortable as they are made for anyone, not you specifically. For this reason, these mouth guards are not recommended by dentists as a cure for bruxism.
Semi-Custom Night Guards
These mouthguards are made with thermos-plastic material in a pre-formed shape similar to the stock mouthguards. However, this type of night guard can be adapted to fit more closely to an individual’s teeth. This is done by heating the guard and then placing it in your mouth. You must then bite into the hot plastic and allow it to mould into the shape of your teeth. This type of guard, however, is still not as comfortable as a custom made guard created uniquely for you by your dentist. Semi-custom night guards can also be a little tricky to set up initially.
Custom Made Night Guards
Manufactured by your dentist, these night guards are made to fit your mouth specifically. Dentists take an impression of your teeth using dental putty and send it to a lab that make a guard from your impression. These night guards offer the superior fit, protection, and comfort that will allow you to get the best sleep possible while protecting your teeth from grinding.
Night guards are a must for many Canadians. These powerful tools can help protect against bruxism and prevent dental problems in the future. If you suffer from bruxism or know someone who does, please don’t hesitate to contact our team at Apple Dental today, and get the answers to any of the questions you may have.