When Mouth Guards may be needed
There are two main reasons we at Myers Dental would suggest you wear a mouth guard: to protect your mouth from harmful grinding and clenching or to protect your mouth from possible injuries. You may be experiencing the uncomfortable symptoms of clenching or grinding, called “bruxism,” or Dr. Myers may have been the first to notice the signs of bruxism during your regular check-up. If you’re an athlete, your coach might have recommended that you invest in a mouthguard to protect your mouth during competition.
Mouth guards, or “night guards,” are pieces of plastic that resemble retainers. They cover either your top or bottom row of teeth and cushion them against harmful practices like clenching and grinding which often happen while we’re asleep. Mouth guards worn during sports work in the same way to prevent damage to your teeth from an injury.
There are several types of mouth guards available, including over the counter “stock” mouth guards, boil-and-bite mouth guards, and custom fit mouth guards that we would have made in a dental laboratory to accommodate your smile perfectly. While stock mouth guards are available at some sports retailers and come prepackaged and ready for use, they are often bulky, ill-fitting, and uncomfortable. Boil and bite mouthguards are similarly available at pharmacies and sports stores but still fail to provide maximum comfort. A customized mouthguard prepared by the team at Myers Dental will provide you with the absolute best fit and comfort, something extremely necessary for restful sleep and intense competition.
Mouth Guards for Teeth Grinding
Teeth grinding is a surprisingly common condition. Roughly 30-40 million children and adults in the US alone experience bruxism. Over time, bruxism can wear down your tooth enamel and leave you vulnerable to tooth sensitivity or further oral health issues such as TMJ disorder. While many people are unaware that they grind their teeth during the night, some are informed by their partner that the bruxism keeps them awake. You may have already felt some symptoms of bruxism, however, if you experience any of these:
You may have seen professional athletes using mouth guards in contact sports such as football, boxing, or ice hockey. These simple pieces of plastic can help cushion blows that might otherwise cause lasting damage to your mouth including broken teeth and injuries to your lips, face, and jaw. There is even some evidence to suggest that mouth guards may reduce the severity and incidence of concussions.
Some findings in sports dentistry also show that mouth guards can protect participants in non-contact sports like gymnastics. Many experts now recommend that everyone, children and adults, ought to wear a mouth guard while playing or competing in an activity that could injure your mouth.
Call our Austin, TX, office at (512) 506-9889 to schedule a consultation and fitting for a mouthguard today!