Grinding Your Teeth? Try a Mouth Guard

If you’re waking up in the morning with a sore jaw and tight neck, you may be suffering from “bruxism” (tooth grinding) while you sleep. According to the New York Times “typically 10% to 16% of adults regularly suffer from sleep bruxism. But this has been no typical year: Pandemic-related stressors are associated with an uptick in not just tooth grinding and jaw clenching but also cracked teeth and other bruxism-associated dental problems.”

Although bruxism is a common condition, it can be difficult to identify. Since sleeping patients are unaware they are grinding or clenching their teeth, they may continue to engage in this behavior for years without a proper diagnosis. Unfortunately, when left unchecked bruxism can result in serious complications such as tooth damage and even tooth loss.

If you suspect you may be suffering from sleep bruxism, it’s time to prioritize your dental health. One of the most effective ways to treat bruxism is by wearing a night guard while sleeping. These simple appliances fit over teeth to provide a cushion and reduce pressure from chronic clenching.

What are the Symptoms of Bruxism?

Although diurnal bruxism does occur in some individuals, in most cases bruxism occurs during sleep. Repeated clenching and grinding causes stress on the teeth, neck, and jaw, and leads to a range of dental health challenges down the road.

If you’re dealing with the effects of sleep bruxism, you may be experiencing a variety of complications ranging in severity. Symptoms of bruxism include:

  • Soreness in the neck, jaw, and temples.
  • Headaches and facial pain.
  • Chronic fatigue from poor sleep quality.
  • Earaches.
  • Chipped or cracked teeth.
  • Compromised jaw mobility.
  • Worn enamel on teeth.

Remember, all patients experience different combinations of symptoms, but it’s still important to quickly identify and treat bruxism before any lasting damage occurs.

What are the Causes of Bruxism?

While an exact cause of bruxism has not been identified, most specialists agree that bruxism is linked to stress and anxiety, which can manifest as clenching and grinding your teeth. It’s no wonder that anxiety-related health issues are on the rise since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, a New York Times article found that dentists are seeing more cracked teeth due to patients’ increased stress and poor sleep quality. 

But stress isn’t the only cause of bruxism. According to the American Sleep Association, other causes of bruxism might include: “alcohol use, cigarettes, caffeine, sleep apnea, snoring, an abnormal bite, and crooked teeth.”

How to Treat Bruxism with a Mouth Guard

Although the causes of bruxism may vary, the treatment is fairly straightforward. Wearing a mouth guard minimizes the pressure placed on jaw muscles from clenching and protects teeth from the effects of grinding. Mouth guards come in a variety of styles and range from lightweight to heavy duty.

In general, there are three categories of mouth guards: custom, boil and bite, and pre-fabricated. Selecting the right mouth guard for your bruxism depends on a variety of factors including durability, price point, and comfort.

Pre-Fabricated Mouth Guards

If you’re looking for a quick, inexpensive solution, then pre-fabricated mouth guards are a great place to start. Wearing a ready-made mouth guard may alleviate bruxism symptoms before investing in a more long-lasting option. Designed with a “one size fits all” mentality, pre-fab mouth guards are available to purchase at most pharmacies. Since pre-fab mouth guards are not molded to fit your mouth, this style is sometimes uncomfortable and may shift around due to poor fit.

Boil and Bite Mouth Guards

Boil and bite mouth guards are an intermediate option between pre-fabricated mouth guards and professionally made custom mouth guards. Boil and bite guards are usually budget-friendly, and can be purchased over-the-counter. In order to achieve a snug fit, you boil the appliance in hot water and then bite into the softened material, leaving an impression of your teeth. While boil and bite mouth guards fit more accurately than pre-fabricated mouth guards, the soft material makes them susceptible to wear and tear. If you suffer from severe bruxism, boil and bite mouth guards may not be heavy-duty enough to prevent long-term damage. On the other hand the soft material makes boil and bite mouth guards a more comfortable option.

Custom Made Mouth Guards

As the name suggests, custom mouth guards are specifically designed to fit your teeth. In some cases, a custom mouth guard might require a trip to the dentist, but custom mouth guards are also available to order through online dental appliance manufacturers. Custom mouth guards serve the dual purpose of preventing damage from clenching and grinding and keeping teeth in place after orthodontic treatment.

Custom mouth guards are typically made from a flexible acrylic material, and are durable and long-lasting when cared for properly. Because custom mouth guards are high-quality and made to last, they are usually a more expensive option. However, with the prevalence of online dental appliance services, you can find custom mouth guards within a reasonable price range.

There’s no doubt that ordering a custom mouth guard is an investment. With the longevity of your appliance in mind, it’s essential to take care of your mouth guard on a day-to-day basis. In most cases, custom mouth guards should be cleaned daily by brushing or using a gentle denture cleaner.

Other Treatments for Bruxism

If you’re still experiencing complications from bruxism even after using a mouth guard, there are several other treatment options to consider. Since bruxism is often linked to stress, treatments like mental health counseling and meditation can help ease intense anxiety. Other treatments like yoga, massage, or physical therapy may help alleviate painful tightness in muscles around the jaw and neck. In severe cases, your doctor may prescribe anxiety medication or a mild muscle relaxant to help release tension in the jaw.

When to See a Dentist

While there are plenty of solutions to treat bruxism you can pursue from the comfort of your home, don’t let your bruxism get out of hand before going to the dentist. If you experience persistent jaw pain or tooth pain, go get a dental check-up! Your dentist will be able to offer additional resources for minimizing your discomfort and will be able to address any cracked or fractured teeth.

Additionally, go see a dentist if your mouth guard is causing new or additional pain. Occasionally an ill-fitting mouth guard can lead to further complications or intensified symptoms.

Treatment is Easy with Dental Lab Direct

At Dental Lab Direct we offer high-quality custom-made dental appliances to treat a variety of dental concerns. From retainers, to night guards, to partial dentures, we provide solutions delivered right to your door.

Ordering a night guard is easy as one, two, three with our simple three-step process. The first step is to request an impression kit in the mail. Once you receive your impression kit, it only takes ten minutes to make impressions of your teeth from the comfort of your home. Then, you mail the impressions back to us and in 2-3 weeks your custom appliance will arrive at your doorstep. Plus, with Dental Lab Direct’s 60-day money back warranty, you don’t have to settle for an uncomfortable appliance. We’re dedicated to finding the perfect fit!

Know Your Options for Missing Teeth

A confident smile helps you feel and look your best. While gaps in your smile are often a cause for insecurity and shyness, missing teeth can also be detrimental to your overall dental health. When left untreated, gaps in your smile place more pressure on existing teeth and may lead to more serious complications down the road.

Luckily, with advances in modern dentistry, there are many options to address missing teeth. Tooth replacement choices like dental bridges, dentures, and dental implants range in cost, durability, and permanence. The more you know about your options for replacing missing teeth, the better equipped you’ll be to make a decision that supports your future health.

Complications from Missing Teeth

There are many reasons why an individual might be missing teeth. First things first, you need to ensure that you’ve addressed the underlying cause of your tooth loss. Gum disease, tooth decay, or injury all contribute to tooth loss and usually require additional treatment. Make sure you’re in the clear with your dentist before pursuing replacement options.

If you have missing teeth but aren’t worried about the aesthetic impacts, you may be wondering why do I need to replace my missing teeth? Replacing missing teeth doesn’t just improve your smile. According to Healthline, “your teeth are designed to work together, so missing one or more teeth can sometimes impact speech, eating, and over time cause other problems.” Aside from difficulty chewing, missing teeth create greater stress on your jaw bone. Over time, this repeated impact can lead to serious complications like bone loss.

Options for Replacing Your Missing Teeth

Depending on the location and extent of your tooth loss, certain replacement options might be better suited to address your needs. In addition to the cost of the treatment, you should consider the durability of the appliance and the aesthetic appearance. For instance, if you’re replacing a tooth in the front of your mouth you may be more concerned with procuring a realistic replacement than with durability. Talk with your dentist about your options to narrow down the search.

Generally speaking, there are three main categories for tooth replacement solutions: dental bridges, dentures, and dental implants. Here are some of the pros and cons for each replacement method.

Dental Bridges

Dental bridges are a great option for individuals who are missing a single tooth in separate areas of the mouth. As their name suggests, dental bridges use neighboring teeth to create a “bridge” that fills the gaps in your smile. The bridge is mounted to the two neighboring teeth and supports a fake tooth to fill in the empty space.

Pros of Dental Bridges – One of the biggest benefits to choosing a dental bridge is their quick installation process. A dental bridge doesn’t require any kind of invasive surgery, and is a great semi-permanent solution you can implement very quickly. Dental bridges require almost no recovery time, and have the added benefit of being a more stable long-term solution than dentures. Dental bridges should not impact your speech or ability to eat.

Cons of Dental Bridges – Because dental bridges create a “bridge,” or connection, between neighboring teeth, they often make it difficult to floss. Instead of using regular dental floss, individuals with dental bridges might need to use floss picks or water picks instead. Additionally, dental bridges do require neighboring teeth to be slightly altered in order to affix the bridge. While in some cases this might not be a big deal, in others it may not make sense to alter perfectly healthy neighboring teeth. 

Dental Implants

Dental implants are by far the most invasive form of tooth replacement. Dental implants are metal fixtures that are surgically mounted in the jaw bone. Once the metal implant is in place, a fake tooth is mounted to the stud. This gives the fake tooth stability over a long period of time, and creates a natural appearance.

Pros of Dental Implants – Dental implants are a long-term solution for missing teeth that fit seamlessly into your smile. The biggest benefit is that they look and act like natural teeth and you never have to worry about taking them out, or doing complicated cleaning routines. Once you have implants, they are there to stay. This also means that implants are a durable solution for teeth that do a lot of chewing. If you want a tooth replacement that’s low maintenance after the initial installation, then implants are a great option.

Cons of Dental Implants – The biggest con of dental implants is the invasive nature of the installation process. Implants are not for everyone, and require dedicated time for recovery as well as repeated trips to the dentist’s office. Plus, since your jaw bone is irrevocably altered, there’s no “going back” once you’ve decided that implants are right for you. Dental implants are also the most expensive option up-front, although their longevity does make up for their initial price.

Dentures

Dentures are probably the most common form of tooth replacement available, and offer a lot of versatility to wearers. There are two primary types of dentures: partial dentures and full dentures. Full dentures consist of an entire set of false teeth either for the top jaw, bottom jaw, or both. Full dentures are affixed to the gumline and palate using denture glue, and are taken out for cleaning. Partial dentures are flexible plastic appliances that fit around existing teeth and fill in gaps in your smile. They are designed to fit snugly, like a retainer, and are a great option for naturalistic tooth replacement.

Pros of Dentures – Dentures provide easy, budget-friendly, solutions for missing teeth. Dentures are often more cost-effective than bridges or implants, and can even be ordered online without the inconvenience of visiting the dentist. Plus, dentures don’t permanently alter your jaw or teeth, so may be a perfect interim option if you’re considering more permanent solutions down the line.

Cons of Dentures – Because they are designed to be an impermanent solution, dentures are less-stable than other tooth replacement options. Denture wearers should be advised not to eat tough, sticky, or hard foods while wearing their appliances, in case they shift or come loose during the meal. The instability of dentures may affect chewing and talking, and for these reasons dentures are sometimes not as discreet as bridges or implants. Dentures also require daily cleaning to keep them bacteria-free, and may be lost or damaged when removed.

A Wide Selection of Options for Missing Teeth with Dental Lab Direct

With Dental Lab Direct you can skip the stressful trips to the dentist and start your journey to a brighter, fuller smile today. Dental Lab Direct manufactures high-quality dental appliances using FDA approved materials.

When you order with Dental Lab Direct, we guarantee your satisfaction within 60 days or your money back. Our three-step ordering process makes improving your smile easy. Once you’ve received our kit in the mail, all you need to do is take impressions of your teeth and send the completed impression kit back to our manufacturers. In a couple short weeks your appliance will be delivered to your door.

It’s time to embrace your confident, beautiful smile. At Dental Lab Direct we want to help you feel like your best self every day.

Are DIY Denture Repair Kits Safe?

Let’s face it: dentures are expensive, and when your dentures are damaged or broken, using a DIY repair kit can often seem like the easiest, most cost-effective solution.

But are denture repair kits safe or effective?

DIY denture repair kits aren’t regulated, meaning that while hundreds of options are available at low cost, there’s no telling what is actually included in a kit. More, the practice of fixing dentures without professionals can lead to reduced functionality.

The biggest threat comes from the introduction of chemicals that are not intended for oral use.

In this blog, we answer once and for all whether DIY denture repair kits are safe for use, and more importantly, share alternatives that alleviate the cost of getting a new pair of dentures.

Are Denture Repair Kits Safe?

While plenty of denture repair kits available on the internet for minimal costs, using one seems like an extremely cost-effective solution. After all, what harm will a little bit of glue do?

As it turns out, quite a bit.

Many glues are made of toxic materials that are not intended for your mouth. Your mouth can transfer these chemicals from the dentures through your saliva, passing directly into your blood stream.

Dentures are manufactured through a fairly rigorous process, and adding glue can trap bacteria that has accumulated on the surface, leading to possible infections.

In short, you should avoid DIY denture repair kits, as there is no way of guaranteeing that they are safe for you. Thankfully, affordable options exist for the times when your dentures break and you need a quick fix.

With Denture Repair Kits, Its Better to Be Safe Than Sorry

Dentures are an excellent replacement for missing teeth, but these tools aren’t designed to last forever. Spanning anywhere between a few years to over a decade, dentures are made out of plastics that will eventually deteriorate and break, just like kitchen appliances or a car.

While maintaining your dentures through good hygiene is often the best way to ensure the longevity of your dentures, even these will break over time. More, the shape of your mouth changes with age, meaning that even the best care requires you to replace your dentures.

Fixing dentures is an option that is available through trained professionals, but another option exists: ordering dentures online.

For the cost-sensitive, ordering dentures online may be a little more expensive than a cheap kit off the internet, but when you consider that DIY repair for dentures often damages those beyond repair in the first place, ordering online saves both time and money required to replace the dentures. More, they preserve your health by avoiding toxic glues, which can lead to hefty medical bills in their own right.

Seeking professionals is the best option for broken dentures. Thankfully, with Dental Lab Direct, getting replacements for broken dentures is easier and more affordable than ever before.

Skip the Kit, Go Dental Lab Direct

At Dental Lab Direct, we offer online dentures that you can order from the comfort of your own home. As you aren’t going through a dentist directly, you can avoid expensive surcharges while getting the best price on the same dentures.

Getting partial dentures is easier than ever through our simple process. Simply order the type of dentures you are looking for, and a dental impression kit will arrive at your doorstep. Following the instructions for getting a mold of your teeth shouldn’t take longer than 30 minutes. After taking the impression, place the mold in the included shipping package, and send it back to us. Within only a matter of weeks, dentures will arrive on your doorstep uniquely designed around the shape of your mouth.

Ordering dentures online is a fantastic option for broken dentures. They ensure the best fit for optimal functionality, and are much cheaper than visiting a dentist or the potential downfalls of using a DIY denture repair kit. Best of all, we offer a variety of options like flexible partial dentures to meet your denture preferences.

If you’ve broken your dentures and need to replace them, look no further. Contact us today for more information about our services, or share our catalog to find out which product is best for you.

Know the Difference Between DIY Dentures vs. Ordering Dentures Online

Looking for DIY dentures? Make sure you know what you’re getting before clicking purchase.

The phrase “DIY dentures” is deceptive, as it often refers to two different things that can have dramatically different consequences for your overall dental health.

Some DIY dentures kits mean – literally – making a set of homemade dentures yourself. Dental experts highly advise against purchasing these types of dentures. These sets of false teeth are not designed around your jaw or mouth. At best, these dentures will function poorly, as they are not designed around your face, are generally made of subpar materials, and can even cause more problems to your gums and jaw over time.

When ordering dentures online, it is strongly advisable to make sure you are getting the dentures manufactured by professionals. At-home dentures are not the same as DIY dentures, yet often the two go by the same name. Online denture services should be mailing you a dental impression kit, and making the dentures themselves. The process is affordable, ensures you’re getting the best results, and only takes a few weeks.

If you have been considering DIY dentures, make sure you know what you’re getting. In this blog, we examine everything you need to know about ordering dentures online, and ensuring you’re getting what you’ve paid for.

Ordering Dentures Online? Make Sure You Know What You’re Buying with DIY Dentures

As previously stated, a distinction must be made between DIY dentures and dentures purchased online. One is basically an ill-advised home project, while the other is a convenient service for getting top-quality dentures delivered from the comfort of your own home.

The motivation towards both is often the same. Dental services are expensive, and going to a dentist to fix missing teeth in your smile is costly. In order to keep the bills paid, dentists will often add hefty surcharges to their services.

With cost as the primary motivator, people might buy DIY dentures kits online with the idea that these can be assembled at home. Ordering dentures online doesn’t cost a whole lot more than these kits, do not require any technical expertise, and ensure that you’re getting exactly what you pay for: no more, no less.

Dangers of DIY Homemade Dentures

Unless you are an expert on dentures manufacturing, you should not be building a set of dentures yourself. This is due to a variety of factors:

  • Functionality: While teeth may fall out on their own, they are not independent from the rest of your mouth. Dentures are designed around the alignment of your jaw, and considerations around the shape of your mouth need to be made to avoid jaw pain, as well as speaking and eating properly.
  • Materials: Dentures have come a long way since wooden teeth – they’re made out of high-quality metals and plastics that are designed for long term wear and tear. Homemade dentures are generally made of cheap substitutions that can damage your gums and may be harmful to your health, as they aren’t regulated goods.
  • Look: While dentures serve a practical function for both speech and eating, they also are designed to make you look good and feel comfortable with your teeth. Professional at-home dentures services use the same manufacturers as dentists, ensuring that they neatly imitate your old smile. Not only do they fit properly and last longer, they mirror your mouth to provide an aesthetically pleasing result.

Online Dentures Services with DIY Dentures Pricing at Dental Lab Direct

Before you buy DIY dentures, read the fine print! Are you ordering an at-home service that will send you professionally made dentures, or are you creating your own pair of dentures?

Don’t cut costs to get poor quality dentures that you’ll end up throwing out – go Dental Lab Direct and buy professionally crafted dentures custom made for your mouth.

Getting dentures through Dental Lab Direct is simple – simply order a dental impression kit that will be mailed to your door, follow the instructions to take a impression of your mouth, and send the results back to us. Within a few weeks, you’ll get a set of partial dentures that are perfectly designed around your mouth. These make a great option for replacing existing dentures that might have been damaged.

Ready to learn more? Check out our store and see which options work best for you.