There are some dental concerns that are not as common as cavities and gum disease. These issues require treatment to ensure a healthy, lasting smile. Patients who may experience teeth grinding, trauma due to sports or active hobbies, or just finishing up orthodontic treatment require additional support of oral appliances to protect their smiles. On top of brushing and flossing twice a day and visiting the dentist throughout the year, these appliances are recommended for patients with these issues for a comfortable bite and a healthy smile.
Dental Trauma due to Hobbies
Sports and outdoor activities are fun but require bodily protection in case of an accident. A sports guard is a great way to protect your mouth from injury during these events. Professionals and amateurs of players in sportswear guards as part of the necessary equipment to perform their best.
Mouth guards protect the upper teeth from being knocked out, broken or chipped, or from cutting the lips. For patients who wear braces on their bottom arch, a mouth protector is recommended to protect their braces or fixed bridges. Sports guards can be bought at a pharmacy or sports store, but a custom appliance made by your dentist ensures better protection and the most comfortable fit.
Teeth Grinding at Night
Also known as nocturnal bruxism, teeth grinding is categorized by waking up to a sore jaw, dull headache, and tooth pain throughout the day. The grinding wears down the tops of the teeth, causing the enamel to weaken. This can lead to teeth becoming chipped or cracked, allowing for bacteria to enter the dental chamber and causing decay or teeth sensitivity. A night guard is worn at night to protect from grinding. Like a sports guard, a night guard can be purchased at a local pharmacy. However, night guards created by your dentist can be more comfortable as you sleep.
Keeping Your Newly Formed Smile
Orthodontics doesn’t just stop once the braces are removed. Patients who complete their orthodontic treatment must wear their retainers at least overnight, every night to keep the shape of their smile. If not worn routinely, teeth will begin to shift back to their original positions. Retainers can either be metal based or look like clear aligners and should be removed before eating. Young patients are reminded to bring their retainer case wherever they go so that they don’t lose their appliance.
Having your oral appliance fabricated by your dentist is a sure way to get the best quality, protection, and comfort. For more information on how oral appliances can keep your smile healthy, contact Dr. Eric Fugier’s dental office today.