Nightguards and mouthguards are important to keeping smiles safe during physical sports as well as preventing the ill-effects of bruxism.
People who participate in sports and regular physical activity are at high risk for mouth injuries. Many sports require the use of mouthguards to protect the teeth and mouth, but it is recommended that all athletes wear mouthguards, even those who are not professional or only play backyard sports. Nightguards serve a different purpose. They are worn while you sleep to prevent clenching and grinding that can wear down your teeth.
You can purchase mouthguards or nightguards in stores, but it is important for a mouthguard to fit correctly in order for it to work. Stock mouthguards are “one size fits all” and generally do not offer good protection for most people. A better type of mouthguard is the “boil and bite” type. When you purchase a mouthguard of this type, you place it in boiling water to soften it and then bite into to make it form to your teeth and mouth.
While a boil and bite mouthguard may give you a reasonably good fit, the best-fitting mouthguard you can buy is one that is custom made by a dentist. For the best protection against sports injuries, a custom-fit mouthguard is worth the investment. These mouthguards are also much more comfortable than those that may not fit right, and a good fit and comfort will make it more likely that you will always wear the mouthguard while participating in athletic activities.
If you have bruxism, which means that you grind or clench your teeth at night, a nightguard is a mouthguard that will prevent damage to your tooth enamel. A custom-fit mouthguard can also be worn while you sleep to alleviate the stress of TMJ disorder and provide relief from TMJ pain and related symptoms.
Damage to your teeth can result in pain, lost time from work and costly dental bills. If you participate in regular sports or physical activity or if you know or suspect that you grind your teeth, a mouthguard or nightguard that fits well and is comfortable can save you money and prevent painful and even life-changing injuries or damage to your teeth. If you are not using a mouthguard, call now for a consultation to learn more about the benefits of having one.