Flat, sharp, worn teeth can make your smile appear older than it really is. Our teeth are made to gradually experience some wear over time, but certain habits or conditions can accelerate that process. If not addressed, premature tooth wear can destroy dental restorations, cause teeth to break apart, and place excess strain on other teeth or the jaw. The pressure radiated through the jaw can also cause TMJ problems and headaches.
Chronic clenching or grinding of the teeth (also known as bruxism) places enamel up against itself when it shouldn’t be. Enamel is the hardest substance in the entire body, even denser than bone. When the jaw is not in a resting position, the pressure of the teeth against one another causes them to wear down faster than they are supposed to. People who have bruxism habits will typically have flat, sharp teeth in the front of their mouths.
Relaxation exercises as well as learning the proper resting positioning can help with daytime grinding. Nighttime grinders can find it very difficult to discontinue their habit because they just can’t control it. Sleeping in a custom mouth guard is the best option. Your dentist will create a smooth, comfortable night guard that keeps your teeth slightly apart, preventing excess wear. This also causes your jaw to be adjusted into a resting position, relieving strain to the TMJ area. By wearing a custom night guard, you can ensure that your teeth won’t experience any more wear or damage to your healthy dental restorations.
Custom fitted guards are comfortable to wear and even sleep in. Their precise fit keeps them in place until you’re ready to take them out each morning.
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