Nighttime mouthguards are a piece of protective equipment that can prevent damage while you sleep. Many people wake up with headaches or toothaches and constantly wonder why. It could be because you grind your teeth or apply extra pressure to your bite at night. If this is the case, a night mouthguard helps protect your teeth and reduce the pain and irritation caused. Our professional team at Singing River Dentistry are professionally trained to fit night mouthguards to your unique smile.
When is a Night Mouthguard Necessary?
A night mouthguard is highly recommended if you suffer from bruxism, or the involuntary clenching or grinding of teeth. Bruxism not only damages your teeth, but can cause tension headaches, temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), and tooth or crown cracking. Mouthguards can align your teeth and keep your jaw in place so you are less likely to clench while you sleep.
Additionally, some night mouthguards can be fitted to help reduce obstructive sleep apnea, which is when your throat muscles relax at night and close or severely narrow your breathing airways. In the same way, these mouthguards can help reduce loud snoring that is often a symptom with sleep apnea.
How Does a Night Mouthguard Work?
Depending on the need of your mouthguard, whether to treat bruxism, obstructive sleep apnea, or loud snoring, night mouthguards generally cover the upper arc of your teeth. For the latter needs of a mouthguard, it will actually lower your jaw and push it slightly forward to keep airways open.
What are the Different Types of Mouthguards?
When it comes to finding the right type of nighttime mouthguard, we will go over your options. However, when you want the best protection from bruxism, you will always want to go with a custom mouthguard. You can find stock mouthguards at local drug stores. These are ready to use out of the box, but they do not offer much protection and are typically uncomfortable.
You can get a mouthguard that requires boiling it, then putting it in your mouth to form it. As it cools, it holds the shape. These are slightly better than stock mouthguards, but still do not conform perfectly to your mouth. Finally, you have custom mouthguards. They are a perfect fit for your mouth and keep your mouth properly aligned to improve breathing and protect your teeth. These are always going to provide you with the most comfort and best protection over anything you can get without seeing us.
How to Care for your Mouthguard
Before placing your mouthguard each night you should brush, floss, and rinse your teeth and gums. You should also rinse your mouthguard with cool water or mouthwash before placing. Using warm or hot water may change the shape of the mouthguard and reduce its effectiveness.
If you suffer from chronic headaches or have been diagnosed with obstructive sleep apnea, a night mouthguard may be able to help restore your vital sleep and improve your quality of life. Call our professionals at Singing River Dentistry today at (256) 562-4001. Our professionals are here to help protect your smile.
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