Clenching or grinding your teeth can damage your teeth. When this occurs, pain, tooth wear, sensitivity, and headaches can occur. At Life-Centered Dentistry, we’re dedicated to providing you with personalized and professional dental care, which includes treating dental issues and protecting the teeth. We offer occlusal mouth guards, also known as bite splints or bite guards to prevent damage caused by teeth grinding and clenching.

What are Bite Guards?

A bite guard is a dental appliance custom-fit to a patient’s teeth. Bite guards serve varying purposes and are often recommended for use in patients of all ages. It is important that bite guards be professionally fit, rather than purchased over the counter, as this ensures maximum comfort and protection during wear. Professional dental guards are usually prepared in a dental lab using an oral impression taken in a dentist’s office. These guards are created uniquely to each patient to prevent discomfort, slippage or inadequate protection. There are many reasons why a dentist would prescribe a mouth guard to a patient. They include:

  • To protect the teeth from nighttime grinding or clenching
  • To protect periodontally compromised patients (periodontal disease)
  • To protect dental implants or crowns from excessive grinding or clenching (which can cause teeth to flex) can damage your restorations

Understanding Teeth Grinding

Teeth grinding, or bruxism is a common dental issue experienced by many individuals. It most commonly occurs when an individual is stressed or even while they are asleep. This habit can cause

  • Teeth grinding or clenching, which may be loud enough to wake up your sleep partner
  • Teeth that are flattened, fractured, chipped or loose
  • Worn tooth enamel, exposing deeper layers of your tooth
  • Increased tooth pain or sensitivity
  • Tired or tight jaw muscles, or a locked jaw that won’t open or close completely
  • Jaw, neck or face pain or soreness
  • Pain that feels like an earache, though it’s actually not a problem with your ear
  • Dull headache starting in the temples
  • Damage from chewing on the inside of your cheek
  • Sleep disruption

Occlusal Guards

Under the dental care of Dr. Eryn Huber, Life-Centered Dentistry provides custom-made occlusal guards to help protect your teeth from the effects of grinding. Occlusal guards are made from durable material and are shaped to your mouth to offer a comfortable and protective layer between your upper and lower teeth.

Benefits of Occlusal Guards

Occlusal guards can help reduce the strain caused by clenching your jaw, lower the chances of dental fractures or enamel loss, improve your sleep quality, and reduce the feelings of a headache or a sore jaw and neck. Occlusal guards are an integral preventative treatment for individuals who have issues with grinding their teeth.

Why Invest in An Occlusal Guard?

Investing in an occlusal guard can save you money and discomfort in the long run. Instead of repairing dental issues such as chipped teeth as they occur, you may be able to prevent them before they happen.

In our journey towards a healthier Grand Rapids, preventative measures like occlusal guards can be vital to your overall dental health. Protecting your smile now can save you discomfort and dental issues in the future. Remember, your dental health is a significant part of your overall well-being, and our team at Life-Centered Dentistry is here to guide you every step of the way.

Contact Us

Don’t let teeth-grinding affect your overall health and daily well-being. If you suspect you have an issue with teeth grinding, you can benefit from an occlusal guard customized specifically to your mouth. At Life-Centered Dentistry, we look forward to providing you with the care your smile needs. Do not hesitate to contact us today by filling out our online contact form to schedule an appointment with our dental experts.