Night Guards in Mar Vista

Teeth before a nightguard in Mar Vista

Do you wake up with jaw pain or headaches? Or do your teeth feel sensitive, especially in the morning? You might have a nighttime clenching and teeth grinding habit called bruxism.

The jaws exert an enormous amount of pressure, especially unconsciously during sleep. A night guard, or occlusal guard, is indicated for people who grind or clench their teeth, most commonly at night while sleeping, or who have mild TMD (temporomandibular dysfunction). While common, tooth grinding can have rapid and devastating effects on teeth by wearing down enamel permanently, causing cracks within teeth, and leading to jaw joint problems. 

Constant pressure due to teeth grinding can also contribute to gum recession and small notches at the gumline that look dark, feel sensitive and are more prone to decay.

What a Night Guard Does

A guard protects your teeth and TMJ (temporomandibular joint) from premature wear by decreasing bite force and providing a protective barrier from future deterioration. Our guards are extremely high-quality and customized to your specific teeth and bite pattern. 

Cracked teeth are a common but devastating condition for teeth. Cracks within teeth usually require extensive restorations (crowns) and often cause such destruction to the tooth internally that they cannot be saved (and need to be extracted).

The Process of Making Night Guards

The turn-around time for night guards is around two weeks. 

At your first visit, we take upper, lower, and bite impressions to form molds of your teeth and bite scheme. The laboratory makes a customized guard so we can ensure a proper fit when we deliver it in our office.

When you return to receive your night guard, your dentist will make minor adjustments to ensure proper bite and comfort, and will often see you for a follow-up appointment to assess how you are adapting to and benefiting from the night guard.

Benefits of a Custom Night Guard (Occlusal Guard)

Teeth in need of a nightguard in Mar VistaOther over-the-counter options are available for clenchers, but patients typically find these very uncomfortable, bulky, and they may not even stay in the mouth during sleep.

A custom night guard will fit snugly and feel comfortable with the bite. You will be able to breathe more comfortably during sleep, which is essential, primarily because bruxism and sleep apnea are related. Many people find that wearing a custom night guard relieves headaches, migraines, and jaw pain, improving their overall quality of life.

Night guards also help to prevent degeneration of the jaw joint due to bite dysfunction and overworking the jaw. Because we adjust the surface of the night guard in our Mar Vista dental office, it promotes healthy and comfortable positioning of the jaw.

Contact Us to Learn More in the 90064 Area

To learn more about if a night guard will benefit you, contact our Los Angeles dental office, conveniently located in beautiful Mar Vista to arrange an appointment with Dr. Chris Strandburg and get the relief you need.