Custom mouthguards are used by dentists for a variety of reasons. They are used to apply tooth-whitening solutions to a person's teeth, they can be used to reduce the damage done by uncontrollable habits like tooth grinding and they can be used to protect teeth while participating in contact sports.
Certain cases of sleep apnea can also be treated with the help of custom mouthguards.
What is the difference between a custom mouthguard and a generic one?
While it is possible to purchase mouthguards at grocery stores, those types are one-size-fits-all. Finding one that fits perfectly is almost impossible. This has some serious consequences. For example, if the mouthguard is purchased for whitening purposes, it might not evenly distribute the bleaching agent. This often leaves the person feeling less than satisfied with the result.
A mouthguard not fitting perfectly means it will not be as effective for whatever purpose it was purchased.
What to expect when getting a custom mouth guard
The dentist will start by examining the patient's mouth and determine if a mouthguard is right for the job. Once that is done, the dentist will take an impression of the patient's teeth. The mold is sent to a laboratory where the customized mouthguard is made.
The device will usually be ready in about two weeks.
Issues a custom mouthguard can help with
A customized mouth tray is a great way to go when a person wants to whiten their teeth. Using one ensures that the whitening product is evenly distributed. It also reduces the chances of the product seeping into the gums, as this can irritate them and lead to inflammation.
Most over-the-counter whitening products come with "boil-and-bite" mouthguards and that is one of the reasons why the results are not comparable to whitening treatments that are provided by dentists.
Sleep apnea is a condition where the patient's airways become blocked during sleep. This can be the result of the tongue falling back too far into the throat, the jaw not being properly positioned and a handful of other reasons.
Some cases of sleep apnea are treated with mouthguards. The device is customized for each patient and it ensures the jaw and the tongue are properly positioned during sleep.
The medical term for tooth grinding is bruxism. It is usually an involuntary habit of grinding and clenching the teeth. Most people who grind their teeth are not aware of the problem since it typically occurs during sleep. Bruxism can be caused by a number of things like stress or anger. It typically goes away when the underlying issue is resolved.
Since grinding can cause lots of damage to a person's teeth over time, dentists typically recommend wearing a mouthguard to reduce the stress placed on the teeth.
The bottom line
If you are dealing with an issue that requires a mouthguard, talk to one of our dentists today.
For more information or to schedule an appointment with Advanced Dental, request an appointment in our New Windsor dental office here: https://advanceddentalofnewwindsor.com. Or call us at (845) 228-8048.
Check out what others are saying about our dental services on Yelp: Mouth Guards.
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