How Effective Are Mouthguards at Reducing Teeth Grinding?

How Effective Are Mouthguards at Reducing Teeth Grinding?

June 1, 2023

Teeth grinding or bruxism is a threat to your smile and oral health. The habit occurs due to stress or imbalance in brain transmitters. It usually affects certain personality types or people using specific medicine. Read on to learn how wearing teeth-grinding mouthguards in Summerland, BC, can reduce bruxism and its effects.

How Does Teeth Grinding Affect Teeth?

Bruxism is a condition whereby a person grinds, gnashes or clenches their teeth. They can subconsciously grind their teeth when awake causing awake bruxism. This type is easy to control than sleep bruxism which occurs during sleep.

The condition causes the upper and lower teeth to rub forcefully against each other. As a result, the top part of the tooth, known as the enamel, is impacted. Continuous teeth grinding causes the enamel to be thin and wear down.

Therefore, the tooth will be susceptible to hypersensitivity, decay and cavities. It also makes the tooth brittle, increasing its risk of chipping, cracking or breaking. Bruxism can damage teeth restorations such as crowns, implants or bridges.

Bruxism affects the joints that help the jaw open and close, called temporomandibular joints. As a result, you will have tension headaches, migraines, and severe jaw and facial pain. Temporomandibular joint disorders also make it difficult to open and close the mouth. Difficulty cleaning your teeth will result in poor dental hygiene.

What Are Mouthguards, and How Do They Work?

These are plastic oral appliances that resemble retainers. They are worn over the bottom or lower set of teeth to protect against the effects of bruxism. There are various types of mouth guards for teeth grinding near you.

They include custom, boil and bite and stock. Stock and boil and bite mouthguards are pre-made and can be obtained over the counter. Although they protect teeth from bruxism, they are not very effective since they do not fit well over the teeth. Custom guards are fabricated by a dentist using an impression of your teeth for a perfect fit.

Mouth guards worn to prevent the effects of bruxism are called night guards. They are usually worn at night or when the patient is asleep. They are also called anti-grinding mouthguards because they provide a cushioned barrier. These appliances prevent the upper and lower teeth from grinding together.

Potential Benefits and Drawbacks of Wearing a Mouthguard for Teeth Grinding

The dentist in Summerland, BC, can provide various solutions to teeth grinding. If the condition is stress related, they may recommend stress management or behavior change. They will also offer custom-made teeth-grinding mouthguards. Below are some pros and cons of mouthguards for teeth grinding.

Pros of Mouthguards for Bruxism

  1. They prevent tooth and restoration damage by avoiding contact with the top and bottom teeth.
  2. Mouthguards reduce jaw tension and pain when you grind your teeth frequently.
  3. They prevent head, tooth, jaw, ear and facial pain after teeth grinding.
  4. Custom-made anti-grinding mouthguards can help align your teeth and bite properly.
  5. The appliances prevent sleep bruxism allowing you to have healthy sleep patterns.
  6. They also help prevent snoring allowing your partner to sleep without disturbance.
  7. When you protect your teeth from the effects of bruxism, you save some money. For instance, mouthguards prevent grinding, which leads to enamel erosion and sensitivity. Treating these issues will cost you money and time.

Cons of Mouthguards or Bruxism

When considering mouthguards for teeth grinding near you, it is crucial to consider the cons. Fortunately, anti-grinding mouthguards have very few disadvantages. For instance, nightguards that are not custom-made can be uncomfortable. Also, wearing the appliances for the first few days is not easy. You will need time to adjust to them.

How Can I Know if I Have Bruxism?

Most people with bruxism are unaware of their conditions. As a result, they do not seek treatment until the condition damages their teeth severely. The symptoms below will help you know if you are suffering from bruxism.

  • Your partner notifies you that you grind your teeth when asleep.
  • Face, neck and shoulder pain
  • A painful jaw caused by temporomandibular joints disorder (TMD)
  • Worn-down or broken teeth, which result in increased sensitivity
  • Damage or loss of crowns and fillings
  • Headaches
  • Earache
  • Disturbed sleep

Contact us at Summerland Dental Centre for treatment if you have the symptoms above.