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Should I wear a Nightguard?

A nightguard is a device custom-made to fit over your top or bottom teeth. It prevents your teeth from shifting, which helps prevent teeth grinding and jaw clenching.

What is a Nightguard?

A nightguard is a custom-made appliance that fits over your teeth to protect from teeth grinding while you sleep. It is made from hard acrylic and is worn on either the top or bottom arch. It prevents you from damaging your teeth and prevents jaw pain.

If you suffer from bruxism, a nightguard can help protect your teeth from the physical damage caused by grinding your teeth at night. While a nightguard will not address the underlying issue causing your bruxism, it may prevent additional damage from occurring and help to protect your teeth and restorations. Many patients see their dentist about a problem in their mouth first before they learn that they may have been grinding their teeth while sleeping. If your dentist suspects that you are grinding your teeth, they will likely recommend that you wear a nightguard to help stop the damage and protect your teeth from more harm.

The majority of patients who grind their teeth at night do so without being aware of it, so it is important to get a diagnosis from a professional before you begin wearing a nightguard. Talk to your dental team today to see if a nightguard could be right for you!

When are Nightguards necessary?

A nightguard is a custom-fit oral appliance worn at night to protect your teeth from clenching and grinding while you sleep. Worn on the top or bottom teeth, a nightguard can help prevent excessive wear on your teeth over time. Your dentist may recommend nightly use of a mouth guard if you suffer from bruxism (teeth grinding). Bruxism is very common, affecting as many as 70 million Americans! While occasional episodes of nighttime teeth grinding are common, frequent teeth grinding can result in headaches, jaw pain, loose teeth and damaged tooth enamel. If left untreated, teeth grinding may lead to additional complications such as temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). TMD can cause chronic facial and jaw pain and make it difficult to speak or eat. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, a nightguard may be just what the doctor ordered.

Use a mouthwash like Colgate TotalSF Advanced Gum Defense that protects against cavities and provides sensitivity relief for healthier teeth and gums. This formula contains potassium nitrate to help reduce sensitivity and reach below the gum line to provide lasting protection against painful sensitivity symptoms. A quick rinse before you go to bed provides antibacterial protection for up to 12 hours. It’s clinically proven to protect against germs that cause plaque and even helps reduce plaque regrowth in hard-to-reach areas by 35 percent more than brushing alone.* With regular use, it provides long-lasting freshness and clean feeling—so you can sleep easy.

Not everyone who grinds their teeth at night needs a mouth guard, but if you experience persistent symptoms of bruxism, make an appointment with your dentist to discuss a custom-fitted nightguard for the best protection and fit. To learn more tips on how to protect your oral health, visit

Are Nightguards Painful?

No! Many of our patients report no pain at all when wearing a nightguard and say that it indeed relieves their TMD symptoms. Some also experience immediate relief, which is great news! However, if your nightguard is your first attempt at alleviating your TMD symptoms, you may experience some mild discomfort as you begin to get used to wearing it. This is completely normal. Your dentist may recommend over-the-counter pain relievers or a special gel that you can apply to your nightguard to ease any initial discomfort. When Can I Expect Relief?

Because the severity of your case of TMD varies from person to person, the amount of time it takes for you to experience the relief from your symptoms will vary as well. In general, you can expect to experience relief within a few weeks to a few months, though in some cases it may take even longer. Fortunately, we will check in with you regularly throughout your treatment process to determine your progress. If your nightguard is not helping to alleviate your TMD symptoms after the first few months of treatment, we will likely recommend trying a different solution. How Often Will I Need to Wear My Nightguard?

Typically, you will be asked to wear your nightguard every night when you go to bed. This will keep your teeth properly aligned while you are sleeping, which is one of the best ways to prevent damage and wear and tear on your teeth due to nighttime clenching or grinding. When you come in for your routine checkups, your dentist will check your nightguard to make sure it is still fitting properly and that your jaw is still in the correct position. If missing teeth are causing your bite to shift out of place, we may even need to replace your current nightguard with a new one. Is your TMJ bothering you? Call Prestige Dental in San Marcos today to schedule a consultation with Dr. Ali Behzadi. He and the rest of our team want to help you

Alternatives to a Nightguard

A nightguard is a plastic mouthpiece that you wear over your teeth while you sleep to prevent your molars from grinding against each other and wearing down prematurely. Some people find that they grind their teeth in their sleep without realizing it, and that their teeth are feeling better when they wear a nightguard. Others experience tooth pain even if they don’t consciously realize they are grinding their teeth. If you wake up with headaches, sore jaw muscles, or sensitive teeth, you may be grinding your teeth in your sleep and should consider getting a nightguard. Another option to a nightguard is to get a custom-made mouthguard to wear while you play sports. Mouthguards can also be worn at night, but they tend to be bulkier and not as comfortable as a nightguard. Talk to your dentist about your options when it comes to protecting your teeth.

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