oral appliances

If you often wake up with jaw pain, earaches, or headaches, or if you find yourself clenching or grinding your teeth, you may have a common condition called “bruxism.” Many people do not even know they grind their teeth, as it often occurs when sleeping. If not corrected, bruxism can lead to broken teeth, cracked teeth, or even tooth loss.

there is an easy, non-invasive treatment for bruxism: night guards.

Night guards are an easy way to prevent the wear and damage that teeth-grinding cause over time. Custom-made by your dentist from soft material to fit your teeth, a night guard is inserted over your top or bottom arch and prevents contact with the opposing teeth.

Another use for a night guard is for TMJ. Night guards are helpful for people with TMJ/TMD. The guard keeps your teeth slightly separated and prevents them from clenching, which can exacerbate the condition. If your condition is more severe, you may require a splint to hold your jaw in place so that the joint can heal. As the name implies, night guards are worn while you are sleeping. Splints are worn all day.

Temporomandibular joint disorders occur when the temporomandibular joint of the jaw, the place where your lower jaw is hinged to your skull, becomes injured or inflamed. This condition may be referred to as either TMJ or TMD.

TMJ/TMD can have multiple causes. Some of the most common are:

  • Bruxism
  • Dislocation of the cushioning disc within the joint
  • Arthritis
  • Injury to the jaw including blunt trauma and whiplash

This condition is quite painful. If you are suffering from any of the following symptoms, you should be evaluated for TMJ/TMD:

  • Pain in your face, jaw, neck, or shoulders, especially when chewing, speaking, or yawning
  • Clicking and popping in the jaw joint
  • “Locking” of the jaw
  • Swelling
  • Fatigue in the jaw
  • Difficulty chewing

mouth guards

Whether you wear braces or not, protecting your smiles while playing sports is essential. Mouth guards help protect your teeth and gums from injury. If you participate in any kind of full-contact sport, the American Dental Association recommends that you wear a mouth guard. Choosing the right mouth guard is essential. There are three basic types of mouth guards: the pre-made mouth guard, the “boil and bite” fitted mouth guard, and a custom-made mouth guard from your dentist. When you choose a mouth guard, be sure to pick one that is tear-resistant, comfortable and well-fitted for your mouth, easy to clean, and does not prevent you from breathing properly.

snore guards

you may already be well aware of how disruptive snoring can be.

If you snore or if someone you live with snores, you may find it difficult to sleep. In addition to sleep deprivation, snoring can lead to other serious health issues like high blood pressure, heart disease, stroke, and diabetes if left untreated. Luckily, snoring can be corrected through the use of a snore guard.

what is a snore guard?

Snore guards are small, flexible pieces of plastic that can be worn in your mouth. A snore guard resembles the athletic mouthpieces you may have seen used in different sports. Batteries, hoses, masks, and other moving parts often used in sleep apnea devices aren’t found in snore guards.

A snore guard works by keeping the tongue and jaw from dropping back into the patient’s throat. By doing this, the snore guard helps keep air-way passages open. Snoring is reduced significantly in patients who have an open air-way while they’re asleep.

A sleep study is often recommended prior to a snore guard fitting.