You may surprise you to learn that night guards fall within the realm of our dentist. These mouth pieces may look like something a football player would wear in order to tackle and not damage their teeth, but they are also very beneficial to wear when sleeping. Our mouths have a tendency to do things on their own while we are unconscious, so it can help to wear a guard to protect our teeth at night.
There are three main benefits of night guards:
1) TMJ (Temporomandibular disorder) – this complication with the jaw joints can create a lot of problems, including tenderness in the jaws and headaches in the morning. A night guard can prevent the teeth front grinding together and clenching while you sleep, which is a major cause of pain and tension. It can also help align the teeth, which also helps to alleviate jaw pain.
2) Grinding and clenching the teeth can still be a problem even if you do not suffer from TMJ. These unconscious actions can damage the teeth by scratching away at the enamel, damaging fillings, and causing chips. A night guard can block contact and prevent damage.
3) You may find that your sleeping patterns improve, as well, when wearing a night guard. They will position your jaw in such a way that will help your muscles relax.