Mouthguards are removable devices that have multiple purposes. The most common kinds of mouth guards are used to protect teeth whether from grinding or from contact sports. These guards can be custom-made by your dentist or can be store-bought and adjusted to your teeth, it will depend on the purpose of the guard. Both children and adults can benefit from them. Here is all you need to know about wearing a mouthguard.
Dentists will recommend guards for several reasons:
- The most common one is for patients with bruxism. This means they normally grind or clench their teeth at night. This condition can cause damage to their teeth if there is no protection. It can also cause chipping and fractures on teeth.
- Patients with TMJ disorder may present bite problems that can cause damage to teeth or even chronic bruxism. To prevent teeth damage, a guard will be recommended even during the day.
- Patients who participate in sports like hockey, boxing, football or other contact sports will benefit from the protection of a guard in all practices and games.
- Patients with sleep apnea or snoring.
The type of guard that will be most appropriate for you will depend on the reason why you need it in the first place. There are two main types of guards: store-bought and custom-made. Store-bought guards can be used directly out of the box, but some of them allow for some customization by boiling them and biting into them. These allow a better fit and protection. The main benefit of these guards is that they are a cheap option. These are the most common for sports guards.
If your dentist recommended a custom-made guard, you would have to attend an appointment for dental impressions. These impressions are sent to a lab for the fabrication of the nightguard. Custom-made guards fit much better than store-bought guards because they are made exactly as your teeth are. For this reason, they provide effective protection against grinding and sports trauma. Since these are made to fit exactly the anatomy and position of your teeth, these will provide the most comfortable fit. However, any general dentist can adjust it further if necessary.
Guards must be kept clean because they tend to accumulate bacteria. Brush your teeth before each use. When you take it out, rinse your guard with cold, soapy water and go over it with a toothbrush. Do not expose your guard to direct sunlight or heat as it can warp. Finally, store your guard in a cool sturdy case when not in use.
Remember in dentistry all is about prevention. If your dentist recommends wearing a guard, be sure to use it as much as you can according to his directions. At the Costa Rica Dental Team, we use nightguards to complete and maintain a lot of the full mouth restorations. At our office, we have a 10-year warranty that will cover chips and breaks from your crowns, which is why if you are a grinder, we will give you a guard to prevent any complications. Since we have an onsite lab, the process of fabricating and delivering your nightguard will take one business day. We have more than 10 years of experience striving to offer affordable and quality dental care to patients in the United States and Canada who need extensive work. If you are looking for a dental restoration, be sure to contact us now!