Chronic teeth grinding, which is officially known as bruxism, puts abnormal stress on your teeth and jaw. Grinding your teeth can lead to issues like broken teeth, tooth sensitivity, jaw stiffness, soreness, headaches, facial and neck pain, and an increased risk of tooth decay.
Night guards fit over your teeth like retainers as a physical cushion between your upper and lower teeth to protect your tooth enamel. They also keep your jaw in a comfortable position to help it stay relaxed as you sleep.
If you get a night guard to help with your bruxism, we will likely recommend that you wear it every night. You should also clean and rinse your nightguard with lukewarm water and a mild soap after each use to remove bacteria and prevent odors and discoloration.
Night Guards vs. Orthodontic Retainers
Night guards for teeth grinding can look a bit like retainers or even Invisalign. However, they will not and are not meant to straighten your teeth. Their purpose is to protect your teeth from teeth grinding. If you would like to straighten your smile, please talk to us about Invisalign® clear aligner therapy!
Patients who have already finished orthodontic treatment but are struggling with teeth grinding should alternate wearing their orthodontic retainer and their nightguard to obtain the benefits of both appliances.
Are Night Guards Expensive?
Custom-made night guards from the dentist are more comfortable and effective, as well as more expensive, than one-size-fits-all options. Our office is insurance-friendly and accepts CareCredit financing, which breaks your dental expenses into affordable monthly payments. For certain patients, we also offer in-house financing.
Night guards in Arlington, VA
Grinding teeth can cause a lot of pain and stress. At Ballston Dental Care, we can help you find relief with a nightguard. While they won’t straighten misaligned teeth, night guards protect tooth enamel and reduce jaw pain and tension. Please contact us today if you have questions or want to schedule a consultation with Dr. Matney!
Nightguard image from Authority Dental under CC 2.0