Involuntary teeth grinding, or bruxism, is a habit that many of our patients experience, most commonly during sleep. This grinding, or gnashing, can sometimes lead to damaged tissue, cause headaches, or even result in disorders in the jaw from habitual clenching.
Complicating the issue is that many who experience bruxism also have additional sleep disorders such as sleep apnea. Sleep apnea disrupts breathing due to the temporary blockage of the airway. To combat these symptoms and prevent their potential ill effects on teeth, bone tissue, and restful sleep, we offer custom night guards as part of our dental care services to our patients who experience bruxism.
Night guards are custom-made for patients with night grinding or clenching. They are made from a durable acrylic that is molded to the mouth for an ideal fit to protect the surface of the teeth from the effects of night grinding. Typically, the material is thin and discrete enough to be worn in the daytime as well for added protection if the habitual grinding is not limited to sleeping.
Teeth grinding can be a real headache in a very literal sense. The grinding and clenching place a lot of tension on the jaw muscles that can cause headaches. Besides the potential for jaw disorder, loss of sleep is another common side effect of bruxism. Bruxism may be a warning sign of sleep apnea, as the jaw involuntarily attempts to open the blocked airway during sleep.
If you are concerned about involuntary teeth grinding, contact us today to schedule an appointment with a Carolina Smiles Family Dentistry specialist who can advise you on treatment and fit you for a night guard to alleviate the symptoms of bruxism. Your night guard will cushion the strain on your jaw and protect your teeth from the wear and abrasion of grinding.