How to Get Accustomed to Your Night Guard

If you have the habit of grinding and clenching your teeth while you sleep, your dentist might recommend that you wear a night guard.

The experience of wearing such a dental device can be uncomfortable, especially during the first few weeks. An experienced cosmetic dentist in Fort Lauderdale shares a few tips to make it easier for you to get accustomed to your mouth guard.

1. Get a customized guard

There are mouth guards that you can buy over the counter. However, keep in mind that these types are not made to fit the exact contours of your mouth.

Over-the-counter mouth guards can come in a variety of sizes and thicknesses. As a result, they can be thick, awkward and feel uncomfortable to wear.

Instead of buying regular mouth guards, get one customized by your dentist. During your dental appointment, the dentist will take a mold of your teeth. He can then get a mouth guard crafted for you based on this mold resulting in a mouth guard that fits you exactly.

2. Use a thinner material

Prescription guards come in three categories: soft, dual laminate types and acrylic models. The type you get depends on the severity of your bruxism or teeth grinding.

Soft guards are prescribed for individuals with minor cases of grinding. These are made from a soft or thin material.

Dual laminates are made out of more durable materials and prescribed for moderate cases. Night guards consist of a hard shell and a soft interior which protects your teeth.

An acrylic guard is often prescribed for the most severe cases.

If you have a minor case of teeth grinding, ask your dentist if a thinner material can be used to make your night guard. Invisalign is one option. It is a material commonly used to produce retainers and can help with minor cases of teeth grinding.

You can find dentists that offer Invisalign in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and other states if the option is not available in your area.

3. Have a pair made for you

Get an upper and lower night guard made for you. It may be a more expensive choice but by having two made at the same time, you can see which one fits better.

People have varying preferences when it comes to wearing night guards. Although guards for the upper teeth are more common, you might find that you feel more comfortable wearing bottom mouth guards.

Plus, you have an extra device that you can use in the event that the other one gets broken or worn.

4. Use it for short periods initially

It will take some time before you get used to the feeling of the guard inside your mouth. To get used to it quicker, try wearing the device for short periods throughout the day.

Feel the material while you wear it. You might notice that you produce more saliva while wearing the device. Don’t worry if this happens as it is a normal reaction of your body.

Make it a part of your daily routine. This will help you become more accustomed to having the guard inside your mouth.

5. Create a cleaning routine

As wearing the guard will become part of your daily routine, cleaning the device should be as well. This is important as the device can become the ideal habitat for bacteria and mold.

In some cases, guards can even start releasing odors. Once this occurs, you might find it more difficult wearing the guard.

During your visit, your dentist will let you know how to take care of your night guard and keep it clean. Follow your dentist’s advice religiously to make your guard last longer.

Extra Tip

Put your guard on once you’re ready to sleep. By putting it on last, you are less likely to notice that you are wearing the guard.

By following these tips, it is hoped that the adjustment period of wearing a night guard becomes shorter. Consult your dentist if there are any issues or if you experience major discomfort while wearing your night guard.