A night guard is a dental device that covers the top teeth. It provides a protective layer between the top and bottom of your mouth. They are also referred to as occlusal or bite splints. Their purpose is to protect your teeth while you sleep.
Why Do I Need a Night Guard?
Night guards are necessary for people who experience bruxism. Bruxism is the clenching or grinding of teeth at night. It happens involuntarily and can cause damage. Over time, repeated grinding can wear down the enamel, which is not replaceable. This can lead to an increase of cavities.
Why Do I Grind My Teeth?
Bruxism can happen on an ongoing basis, or it can become a new behavior when certain conditions exist. Some people have teeth that are misaligned, which can cause problems when closing. This can happen as a result of temporomandibular (jaw muscle) issues that lead to grinding. Others may develop the problem due to facial muscle spasms.
Anxiety and stress will also affect your sleep habits. If you are experiencing high levels of either, you could start grinding or clenching your teeth while you rest.
Ask a Dentist About Night Guards
Whether the cause is temporary or permanent, a night guard can help protect your teeth. Even if you have one, you should still speak to a dentist to find out what is causing the condition. Some people can reduce or stop it by limiting their alcohol or caffeine consumption. Others may use relaxation techniques before bedtime. Your dentist can check your teeth to make sure there is no grinding-related damage. Contact Goldstein Dental Group in Novi, Michigan today to schedule an appointment.