Bruxism, also referred to, as teeth grinding, is a problem that many people face, but they are very often unaware of it. After feeling the symptoms like sore jaw muscles, people often look for a nightguard to prevent the grinding and sore muscles.
The most common symptoms observed are sore muscles in the jaw or face, tension headaches, or unusually worn teeth. If you are experiencing these or other symptoms, you should definitely get a mouthguard. Coverings worn over teeth are known as mouth guards and are used by many people who grind their teeth during sleep.
It is also used for protecting yourself from injuries during sports. They can be used by children, teens, and adults. There are three types of mouthguards, depending upon what you need and what is easily available.
Three Types of MouthGuards:
Stock mouth protectors are inexpensive and can easily be bought at most department stores or sporting stores. Since these mouthguards are not custom made; they don’t offer a good fit. Dentists don’t recommend them as well.
Boil and bite mouth guards are also available at many sporting good stores and they are preferred over stock mouth protectors as they are made from thermoplastic material. What makes them interesting, as the name suggests is that you “boil and bite” them and by doing so you can change their shape according to the shape of your mouth.
Lastly, the one that is highly recommended is the Custom-fitted mouth guards. They are made by professionals and made through taking an impression of your teeth, then, a mouth guard is molded over the model using a special material. It is more expensive than the other ones but it is custom made and offers more comfort and protection.
Tips for Sleeping with a Mouth Guard
Nightguards offer a number of benefits and are highly recommended by dentists. They keep your upper and lower teeth spaced far apart at night, thus, preventing the teeth from grinding. Not only that, but they also help position your jaw as well, so that your upper breathing area remains open, helping you breathe freely and sleep better.
People who grind their teeth during sleep are most likely to snore and through mouth guards, your jaw is better positioned thus making it unlikely for you to snore. Reduced snoring eliminates the risk of sleep apnea as well. Lastly, you’ll get better sleep and will wake up symptom-free.
Like any other thing, it is hard to get used to a newly incorporated thing in your life, but we all get there eventually. Sleeping with a mouthguard can get uncomfortable at first. You might experience the material to be too thick and bulky.
They can get inconvenient but the trick is to fight it until you get used to it. A very common side-effect observed in people using a mouth guard is excessive salivation. Your body does different things to get used to the mouth guard which may result in excessive salivation.
Another side effect of mouthguards is dry mouth. The constant exchange of air in and out of your mouth can most likely result in dry mouth. Usually, it takes about 2 weeks for your body to adjust to it.
Common side effects of mouth guards also include bad taste in the mouth, excess saliva, sore gums, TMJ (temporomandibular joint) pain, and at times toothache.
Teeth grinding in adults are often resulted by stress, anxiety, or other sleep disorders, but, it can also be due to missing or crooked teeth or an abnormal bite. In children, teeth grinding usually begin because of allergies, misaligned teeth, or some kind of irritation in their mouths. Typically, children outgrow teeth grinding as their teeth and jaws change and grow over time.
People suffering from bruxism often avoid using night guards due to various reasons. Some common complaints are they push on teeth too much and feel too tight, they feel uncomfortable, it makes them gag, makes them drool too much, etc. These issues might seem like a big deal, but you could easily tackle them.
If your mouth guard feels too tight, it’s a good thing. The “tight shoe” feeling is a good sign as it makes sure the night guard stays fit and in place while you sleep. These days, a lot of mouthguards come in a special material that is quite flexible on the inside, while maintaining its firmness on the outside.
If nothing works out, run the mouth guard under hot/warm water for 30 seconds to 1 minute before placing it in your mouth. It helps to soften the gel on the inside of the mouthguard, making it adjust better with your teeth.
Feeling uncomfortable with a night guard is also a common side effect but you’ll eventually get past that feeling. Initially, your body will take some time to get used to it but the good news is that it will, eventually. Normally, it takes about 2 weeks for your body to get used to a mouthguard.
If you have a sensitive gag reflex, it is likely that you will gag while using a mouthguard. A lot of us are not aware of this but gagging is mostly in our heads and we can control it over time. We have seen a lot of examples in which people had a really bad gag reflex but through taking control they eventually got rid of it or majorly reduced it. You can always look it up online. Yoga helps as well in the elimination of gag reflex.
Drooling is also an observed side effect in people who use mouth guards. Our body is used to food entering our mouth and when a foreign object enters, it produces more saliva. In this case, too, the power of our brain comes in handy. As mentioned earlier, after getting adjusted to the mouth guard (which takes around 2 weeks) it is very much likely that you won’t be facing this problem.
All in all, mouth guards are used by many people and it’s always good to get yourself a custom made mouthguard. They have been proven to help people with bruxism and will definitely make your life a whole lot better.