Does your jaw ache, or do you have frequent headaches? Aside from stress, these symptoms can indicate a dental problem known as bruxism, which is teeth grinding. Some people grind their teeth while asleep, or they clench their jaw during sleep or during the day. Fortunately, our dentists at Peabody Dental Group in Peabody, MA, can create night guards to help protect teeth against bruxism.
The causes of bruxism are unknown, but studies show the factors that contribute to it include stress, anxiety, drinking alcohol, smoking, sleep apnea, fatigue, and caffeine consumption. Sometimes the use of medications like amphetamines can trigger teeth grinding. If the cause of your bruxism is sleep apnea, treating it can help alleviate teeth grinding.
A night guard is a dental appliance that goes into the mouth while sleeping to protect your teeth. It looks like a mouth guard and cushions your teeth so that the tops don’t flatten, which can lead to tooth breakage.
Our dentists at Peabody Dental Group can recommend the best night guard for you based on the severity of your teeth grinding. Three types of night guards are available in Peabody, MA.
A soft plastic night guard is for people with mild to moderation teeth grinding or jaw clenching issues. Since it is soft, it is easy for people to get used to while sleeping with it in their mouths. However, they don’t last long because many people start chewing on them, which wears them down quickly.
A double laminate guard consists of a hard outer layer of laminate with a softer inner layer designed for comfort. People with moderate to severe teeth grinding will use this type of night guard to keep their teeth from wearing down and breaking.
Hard-acrylic night guards are best for those with severe bruxism. Our dentists at Peabody Dental Group may also recommend this type of night guard for people who have or are developing TMJ. These guards leave little room for people to grind their teeth while sleeping.
If you suspect that you grind your teeth at night, consult with our dentists in Peabody, MA, to find out if you have bruxism.