What is a dental night guard?
Dental night guards are commonly recommended to patients that may grind their teeth at night while sleeping. Teeth grinding, commonly referred to as Bruxism is any form of habitual condition whereby an individual grinds their teeth in the day or at night.
In the long term, teeth grinding, can potentially cause oral health issues. This includes; teeth issues with worn or damaged enamel, gum recession, increased tooth sensitivity and the development of TMJ disorder (temporomandibular joint).
According to studies, sleep bruxism is categorised as a sleep disorder. Research has found that Bruxism has effected at least 85% of the population during their lifetime and is estimated to effect up to 31% of adults. The primary cause related to teeth grinding is stress and anxiety. Unfortunately the long term habitual habit to comfort stress and anxiety is teeth clenching.
Symptoms of Bruxism
- Teeth grinding during the day or while sleeping. It is common for individuals to not know that they grind their teeth at night until a family member or partner informs them.
- Waking up with headaches
- Jaw soreness
- Facial pain
- Fatigue from lack of “deep” sleep
Bruxism can damage your teeth
- Wearing of teeth
- Provoke toothache
- Facial pain
Mouthguard for Teeth Grinding
While their is not a definitive cure for Bruxism, extensive clinical research has shown relief with the use of a mouthguard. These can also be referred to as dental guards, mouth guards, nocturnal bite plates, or bite splints.
Some patients have found a night guard reduces the rate of snoring and sleep apnoea. Although such results differ between patient conditions.
Night guards protect your teeth by creating a protective soft barrier between your teeth. Therefore, when clenching your jaw, the night guard helps to reduce the tension of the muscles in your jaw along with the impact of your teeth. This results in less pain while also improving sleep.
Dentists are able to prescribe a night guard custom-made for the patient. The advantage and benefits of dental mouth guards is that they allow for better comfort and are less obtrusive than over the counter mouthguards.
Can private health be used to cover a night guard?
Most dental insurance plans cover some or all of the cost. If you’re unsure, please feel free to ask our team and we can assist with your queries prior to booking an appointment.