Dr. Alison Vitelli-Rodriguez, DMD talks about the importance of mouthguards and why we recommend them to our patients:

Why do we recommend athletic mouthguards and night guards?  Simple!  We need to protect our dentition!  Sportsguards are designed to wrap around top and bottom teeth and targeted for athletes in the type of sports that are at greater risk of causing trauma to teeth, such as, boxing, some types of martial arts, and football, among others.  Sports-related dental injuries can be very expensive so a custom mouthguard is a worth-while investment.

On the other hand, we have the nightguard.  These are  great for patients who suffer from applying extreme forces to the teeth when clenching and bruxing (grinding) the teeth.  According to the American Dental Association grinding is when you slide your teeth back and forth over each other, while clenching means you tightly hold your top and bottom teeth together. Bruxism is something that children and adults of any age may do. Bruxism may cause one or more of these symptoms:

  • headache or earache
  • sore jaw
  • jaw clicking
  • frequent toothaches
  • sensitive teeth
  • worn or cracked teeth or fillings
  • markings from pressing your teeth into your tongue
  • trouble sleeping

In some cases, the extreme force applied when clenching or grinding can cause soreness of the jaw joint due to stressing the muscles we use to move the mouth.  We also see wear of the teeth right at the gumline.  This wear is referred to as abfraction lesions and they can make the tooth very sensitive to cold.

Regular dental checkups are important and our dentist and dental hygienists check for damage in the early stages and recommend wearing a night guard during sleep.  At Spring Lake Dental group our night guards and athletic mouth guards are custom-made and will protect your teeth and keep them from wearing down.

Let’s us help you protect your teeth!