Nightguards for Bruxism: Teeth Grinding and Clenching
Dental problems are extremely painful and inconvenient for anyone. Teeth grinding and clenching is a common habit among many that can be very hurtful and destructive to teeth. This fixation of teeth grinding or clenching is also known as Bruxism. However, there are nightguards which can help anyone who has a habit of clenching while sleeping.
What is Bruxism?
The thing about Bruxism is that you may not be aware of your own teeth-grinding or clenching while sleeping. It is quite likely that you have a grinding habit and you have no idea about it. Some of the symptoms which can help you determine whether you have Bruxism or not are waking up with bad headaches, jaw soreness, fatigue from lack of sleep, facial pain and teeth grinding. Occasionally grinding your teeth should not be a big deal but a consistent long-term problem might suggest Bruxism which can also lead to a broken tooth, loss of tooth and severe injuries. It has been hard to determine the exact cause of this condition, although it is commonly believed that anxiety and stress have a vital role to play. Apart from the psychological aspects of teeth grinding, external aspects such as alcohol, cigarettes, snoring, crooked teeth and caffeine are also contributing factors.
Nightguards: Their usage and comfort
Nightguards are also known as mouth guards, dental guards or nocturnal bite plates. These provide a protective layer over the teeth which prevents your teeth from unwanted clenching. Therefore, even if you clench your jaw while sleeping, the nightguard will lighten the pressure and give cushion to the muscles in the jaw. By protecting your teeth, the guard prevents any sort of face or jaw pain along with safeguarding the enamel of your teeth. Nightguards can easily be cured without a prescription or directly from a dentist. Various kinds of nightguards exist and you must choose the one that best suits your individual needs, some of which are as follows:
1. Dual laminate nightguards
This kind of nightguard is for those people who have moderate teeth grinding habit. The nightguard is soft on the inside and hard on the outside which creates a comfortable cushion for clenching teeth. The best part about dual laminate nightguards is that they can easily handle excessive clenching and grinding with long-lasting durability. These nightguards offer a longer warranty than any other soft nightguards available for Bruxism. While there are many advantages to this, these nightguards are thicker than the others which makes it extremely difficult for you to adjust between your teeth causing occasional discomfort.
2. Soft nightguards
Soft nightguards are frequently used for Bruxism, mainly for slight, occasional cases of teeth clenching and grinding. These nightguards are useful for occasional grinders and not for severe teeth clenching individuals. The best part about this guard is that it has the most comfortable fit of all the nightguards which adjusts like a piece of cake. Soft nightguards are also light on the pockets and can save a lot of your money. Having said that, it is quite possible that some people might chew on the soft material unintentionally leading to inconvenience. These nightguards are considerably durable with a narrow lifespan. Most of the nightguards have a 6-month warranty period due to their limited durability. While they can easily prevent clenching, they may not be an effective long-term solution to Bruxism.
3. Hard nightguards
Hard nightguards are made of acrylic which makes it extremely rigid and tough. These are used for very severe cases of grinding and clenching. There are some people who are unable to control the urge to clench, especially while they are asleep and end up severely damaging their teeth. In order to get rid of the severe conditions, hard nightguards had to come into the picture. These nightguards are the most durable ones and can also prevent the teeth from shifting. By offering the longest warranty period, nightguards have actually helped many through Bruxism. Even though hard nightguards provide greater durability, they come with their own flaws. They are extremely thick than any other nightguard making it cumbersome to the user. As they have a hard surface, you might find yourself tossing over your bed due to lack of sleep. Hard nightguards can be procured from a dentist as an accurate impression is mandated for its fit and they are quite expensive when compared with the others.
How to adjust your nightguard?
The key is to choose the most adaptable and lean nightguard suitable for you. You will have to bear with it for at least 6 weeks to develop a habit of wearing it. Once the initial adjusting tenure is over, you should feel as if it’s part of your daily dental routine. The best time to wear it is right before you go to sleep so that it doesn’t feel unpleasant or annoying. There are also a lot of personalized options that you can choose from to fix your Bruxism. There’s a one-size-fits-all mouthguard that does not come with a custom fit and has a free fit size. They are relatively cheaper and can be useful for occasional teeth grinders. There’s another type called boil and bite, wherein you boil it in water and bite it to leave your own teeth’ impression. Apart from these, you can also explore your online options and order your nightguard or simply get it directly from the dentist.
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