Good Candidates for Dental Mouth Guards
By J. Brent Gorrell on December 28, 2013
When it comes to providing excellent dental care treatment, there are plenty of cosmetic and restorative treatments to consider. There are also plenty of preventative options out there as well. When you meet with a skilled cosmetic dentist, a lot of emphasis may be placed on the preventative. Through these preventative treatments, the need for invasive restorations and care may be avoided.
Right now, we want to look at one particular kind of restorative option that may prove helpful: the dental guard. Certain people may prove more ideal candidates for dental guard use than others, so let us note the most common people who would benefit from them.
What are dental guards?
Dental guards are mouth guards that are used to protect the teeth and other structures of the mouth from injury and damage. There are different kinds of dental guards out there to meet the needs of patients.
Dental Guards and Customization
Some of these guards can be picked up at the local store, but these kind of guards are not customized in any fashion. Semi-customized mouth guards are also available at the store, usually involving heat-sensitive plastic polymers. Fully customizable dental guards are only available from your dentist, and they offer the highest level of comfort.
Dental Guards and Athletics
One of the best reasons for getting dental guards is to protect the teeth from potential injury during sports. While many people do get dental guards from the store, getting fully customized dental guards from the dentist tends to be better for athletes given the degree of comfort afforded.
Sports Where Dental Guards Would Be Helpful
People who play full contact sports and combat sports are ideal candidates for dental guards. Be sure to consider getting a custom guard if you participate in any of the following activities:
- Tournament martial arts
- Mixed martial arts (MMA)
Dental Guards and Tooth Grinding (Bruxism)
Tooth grinding is another common reason why people get dental guards. Also known as bruxism, this refers to the grinding, clenching, gnashing, and shifting of the teeth that occurs when a patient is sleeping. The most common causes of tooth grinding are tooth misalignment and stress.
If left untreated, tooth grinding can lead to tooth damage (often necessitating restorations such as dental crowns), headaches, and a jaw joint problem known as a TMJ disorder. Many people are familiar with TMJ disorders for the clicking, grinding, and locking of the jaw that's common with the condition.
How Dental Guards for Tooth Grinding (Bruxism) Work
Dental guards for tooth grinding are worn when a patient is sleeping. The dental guard places space between the lower dental arch and the upper dental arch, ensuring that there is no contact between the teeth. Pressure is relieved on the jaw joint in the process, which helps treat the symptoms of the TMJ disorder.
Learn More About Dental Guards
For more information about mouth guards and how they can be of great benefit to you and your needs, be sure to contact our Mountain View cosmetic and restorative dentistry center today. Our entire team looks forward to meeting you in person and helping you achieve the best possible dental heath.
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