For people who clench and grind their teeth at night, custom made night guard can help preserve your teeth.
So what causes people to grind their teeth?
The joint on both side of the jaw is called the Temporomandibular Joint, usually called TMJ. When there is inflammation, pain, or damage to the joints, it is called Temporomandibular Dysfunction, or TMD.
TMD can be caused by unintentionally clenching or grinding your teeth, teeth that are not aligned properly, and injury to your teeth.
Berkeley dentist Dr. Jennifer H. Cho DDS, FAGD has helped many patients with TMD treatments, including fitting for custom night guards.
While some patients unconsciously grind their teeth when they are awake, others do so when they are asleep. Our jaw muscles are capable of exerting far more strength while we are asleep than when we are awake, which is why night guards are a great preventative measure.
Even just a few seconds of clenching or grinding on a regular basis can cause straining and overuse of the jaw muscles, ligaments, and damage to your teeth permanently.
A night guard is made of hard plastic that separates your upper and lower teeth while you sleep, preventing them from wearing on each other. The night guard also separates the jaws enough to prevent you from being able to exert as much force with your jaw muscles.