Occlusal guards resemble the shape of a horseshoe, they’re made of plastic, and they’re worn over the top of the teeth to protect them from any damage done when clenching or grinding. This guard creates a literal and physical barrier between your upper and lower teeth. many people are unaware of the fact that they clench or grind their teeth at night while they sleep, so the dentist will recommend the occlusal guard be worn at night only. In the following article, we will discuss exactly what the occlusal guard does, whether or not you should wear one, and how it can have positive effects on your day-to-day life.
Most occlusal guards are made of hard, clear acrylic. Some dentists may recommend a soft based acrylic depending on your particular needs. Over time though your occlusal guard can become discolored, even though it doesn’t affect the functionality aspect of this dental appliance. The occlusal guard longevity is primarily based on the severity of your grinding. If you are a severe grinder yourself, you may need to replace your occlusal guard more often than others.
It’s important that while wearing your guard you don’t drink or eat anything other than water. Anything other than water can discolor your guard. After removing your occlusal guard in the morning, be sure to brush it with your toothbrush and rinse it with cold water. Don’t use toothpaste while cleaning it as most pastes can have abrasive in it that can scratch the services of the guards.
A custom-made occlusal guard can vary from dentist to dentist in terms of price. Overall the investment is worse preventing your teeth from becoming damaged. Without the use of an occlusal guard, you could be looking at thousands of dollars in the future used to repair the damage that’s been done to your teeth.
At Katy Dental Experts, we are exactly that! At our office in Katy, TX, we are a group of dental professionals that take pride in not only caring for your teeth but caring for your health and well-being as a whole. Our expertise and comfort care is evident as soon as you walk through our doors. In order to see for yourself, feel free to give us a call or send us an email to make your very first appointment!