When is a Night Guard for Teeth Grinding Recommended?

Night Guards New Albany, IN

If you have noticed signs of teeth grinding, it might be time to talk to the dentist about getting a night guard. Patients dealing with the condition may wake up in the morning with sore jaws or a headache. The condition varies in severity and it may be hard to determine the origin of the problem. Either way, a night guard can help protect the teeth from the effects of teeth grinding.

The need for a night guard

Also called a bite guard, this oral device is worn in the mouth and prevents the teeth from rubbing against each other. The dentist will typically recommend a night guard after discovering any of the following signs:

Chipped tooth

A chipped tooth means a visit to the dentist for repairs, but it could also be an indication of a severe case of teeth grinding. As the teeth rub against each other and go back and forth, there is too much pressure on the enamel that may eventually damage the teeth. Tooth damages are often expensive to fix. A weaken enamel also makes the tooth vulnerable to cavities, so it is advisable to get a night guard before additional damages occur.

Chronic teeth grinding

Some people grind their teeth occasionally due to temporary issues like workplace stress. In the case of chronic grinding, it will probably occur as a subconscious activity during sleep. Nighttime teeth grinding require dental attention. Although it will not stop the habit itself, a night guard will reduce the negative impacts on the teeth.

Recurrent headaches

Waking up recurrently with a tension headache or migraine in the morning could be the consequence of nighttime teeth grinding. The dentist may examine the teeth to make the diagnosis. They may recommend a night guard, as well as, relaxation techniques to calm the patient at night and reduce the occurrence of teeth grinding.

TMJ disorder

The temporomandibular joint disorder is often caused by inflammation of the muscles surrounding the jaw joints, which can be traced back to clenching or grinding the teeth against each other. Patients who have been diagnosed with TMJ disorder can talk to their dentist about getting a night guard. It will limit the movement of the jaw joint and reduce bruxism, thus alleviating some of the discomfort or pain from TMJ disorder.

Use of antidepressants

Patients who take antidepressants may be advised to get a night guard by the dentist. According to a study published in 2012 by Clinics, paroxetine, the active ingredient in some antidepressants can contribute to nighttime teeth grinding. The use of certain medications, such as Paxil, may also have this side effect. The medical professional will recommend a nightguard to protect the teeth against the side effects. Patients can also discuss with their doctor about modifying the dosage or changing the drug if teeth grinding becomes burdensome.

Final note

Teeth grinding is a prevalent problem, but with a night guard, individuals do not have to suffer the consequences. Talk to the dentist when noticing any signs of teeth grinding.

Request an appointment here: https://riverfallsfamilydental.com or call River Falls Family Dental at (812) 962-7342 for an appointment in our New Albany office.

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