You have been fitted with a night guard to reduce the damage caused by bruxism. Bruxism is the clenching and grinding of your teeth that most often occurs while you sleep, but it can occur at any time of day.
Symptoms can include:
- A sore, tired jaw
- Difficulty in opening and closing your mouth
- Sensitive teeth
- Earaches or pain in your jaw joint
- Flattened or worn-down teeth
- Teeth that are chipped at the edges or notched at the gumline (abfraction)
- Loose teeth
- Damage to the bone around your teeth
- Damage to your jaw joint (TMJ)
Not all causes of bruxism are known, but stress is often a major factor.
It is important to wear your night guard every night to protect your teeth and jaw joint from further
breakdown and possible shifting of your teeth. It can take some time to get accustomed to wearing this
device, so you may want to wear it for an hour or so before you actually go to bed. If you take it off during the night, keep it safe from children and pets and just wear it again the next evening.
Your night guard was designed and made to have a passive fit and may have been adjusted on the day it was given to you. However, if after a few days it feels tight, please call our office, and we will schedule an appointment for an adjustment.
To clean your night guard:
- You may use your toothbrush with a drop of toothpaste to brush it clean.
- Keep your night guard in the retainer case provided to you.
- Keep your night guard and your retainer in a safe place and out of the reach of children and pets.
- Once a week, you want to soak it in water and drop in a denture cleaner tablet (Efferdent, store brand or generic). When the fizziness stops, rinse it clean and place it in the retainer case.
- You can also clean it in your dishwasher. Run a regular cycle and make sure to place it in a closed basket so it will not fall out and possibly land on the heating element, as this can melt your night guard.
To learn more about our night guards in Durham, North Carolina, please set up an appointment with our dentist, Dr. Ellis K. List, by giving our team a call today at 919-682-5327.