Custom Mouth Guards
Cosmetic dentistry is, as the name implies, a group of procedures designed to improve the look of your smile. As with all procedures, there are benefits and risks, and it is important to discuss each procedure, cost, and maintenance with our staff. You are responsible for consulting your insurance company regarding coverage of cosmetic procedures.
A common symptom of stress is grinding teeth, especially at night. Your dentist can help you minimize TMJ, clicking, and wear on your teeth by creating a custom mouth guard for you.
While sports mouth guards, that you can “boil and bite” to fit, are easy to find in sporting goods stores, they can be awkward and uncomfortable. They are not made to prevent the effects of grinding and are not likely to help the problem.
Custom created mouth guards are made in a dental laboratory from impressions taken by your dentist for your specific mouth and problem. The dentist may even make them in the office. Usually, these guards are fitted on the upper teeth only, but on occasion, a lower guard may be needed as well. Because these are made to fit each individual, they are much more effective.
At the first office visit for a custom mouth guard, the dentist will do an examination and take impressions of the teeth. Between visits, the dentist molds a special thermoplastic material onto the impressions of the patient’s teeth to create the custom guard. It is created, trimmed, and polished before the patient’s second visit. At the second visit, the fit is checked and any adjustments or trimming is completed to ensure comfort. A third appointment may be scheduled to check the mouth and the guard after a few weeks of wear.
Mouth guards for sports may also be created by some dentists. Ask yours about it if you, or your child, engage in a contact sport.
Mouth guards are easy to clean with a soft toothbrush and toothpaste and should be kept in the provided case to prevent damage and protect against germs.