Dr. Powell, the Hickory Dentist, is the one to see about your toothaches, facial soreness, earaches and headaches as these can all be painful signs that you clench or grind your teeth. While making healthy lifestyle changes can help, you might think you have to live with the resulting discomfort. Luckily, there is a pain-free solution to this common problem with a dental night guard, and all it takes to get started is a quick visit to your dentist!
- No More Pain
If you wake up with any tenderness or aching in your jaw, ear or head, there is a good chance of tooth clenching and grinding in your sleep may be to blame. Although healthy habits such as removing caffeine from your diet and adding exercise or other stress-fighting strategies to your lifestyle can help, these are not reliable treatments. Nightguards work to cradle your teeth to absorb and more evenly distribute the pressure from your bite. You simply press it into place over your teeth when you go to bed or when you feel stressed. There is no pain or extra steps involved.
- Protects Your Tooth Enamel And Gums
In addition to feeling better, a nightguard also works to prevent wear and tear on your enamel and gum line. Enamel is your layer of defense against tooth sensitivity when you drink something cold or hot, for example. Your gum line guards your tooth roots against exposed pain and bacterial infection. Damage to the enamel and gum line are two hidden effects of clenching and grinding that are often not found until the next dental check-up. By then, the injury to the tissue may require extensive grafting, crowns or other related repairs.
- Reduces Risk Of Alignment Shifting
Issues with enamel erosion and gum line recession are only part of the concern with shifting teeth. Remember all that time spent in braces so you could have straight teeth? Alignment is often thought of as an aesthetic issue. However, poor alignment can also cause tooth pain, the biting of your cheek or tongue when you eat or even keep you from breathing through your nose.
- Offers A Better Sleep For All
We all know a good night’s sleep is important for making the most out of our days. But, did you know a lack of sleep is linked with a number of serious diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, and diabetes? If you are clenching your teeth or grinding at night, it is likely you are not getting enough sleep. Plus, the sound of your grinding may be keeping your spouse awake at night as well. Wearing your night guard can literally save the day for both you and your spouse by stopping the movement and strong force that gives you a restless sleep.
- It’s Made Just For You
Convinced you need this miracle sleep tool? By now, you are probably wondering if you need to see the dentist for a custom made night guard or if you can just buy one off the shelf at the nearest local pharmacy. If the purpose of the device is to ensure your teeth align properly, do not shift, and your jaw muscles are not stressed, then a trip to the dentist is required for the correctly selected device with a custom made fit.
Some night guards are worn on the upper teeth where others are worn on the lower teeth. Your dentist will know which is best for your needs. Furthermore, a custom-made snug fit where the dentist has adjusted the device for the correct alignment for your bite that may prevent further shifting of your teeth and all the problems that movement causes as discussed above.
In short, for those who could benefit from wearing night guard, this is great news because this is an easy, effective and painless treatment option. It may cost more upfront to purchase a custom night guard from the dentist than one in the pharmacy. However, that cost is minimal compared to the price of the restorative dentistry down the road from enamel erosion, gum recession, and other forms of oral damage caused by poor alignment as the result of not wearing a properly fitted device. Therefore, be sure to ask your dentist if a nightguard is right for you. Then, schedule an appointment to have one professionally crafted and equilibrated to fit your unique bite and save on long-term care costs while giving you and your spouse a better night’s rest.