Can A Night Guard Be Worn with Braces?

Can A Night Guard Be Worn with Braces?

Mar 23, 2023

You may grind your teeth during sleep if you often wake up with a sore jaw, headaches, or tooth pain. Bruxism is a common problem in which people unconsciously grind their teeth or clench their jaw. It can happen when awake, but it’s more common during sleep. While bruxism doesn’t always result in life-threatening issues, regular grinding can lead to teeth damage, poor bite, and jaw disorders such as TMJ.

Fortunately, wearing a night guard can reduce the symptoms of teeth grinding. However, if you’re currently undergoing orthodontic treatment, you may wonder whether you can even wear a night guard. The answer is yes, you can wear a night guard with braces. Keep reading to learn more.

What is a Night Guard?

A night guard is a dental device worn over your upper or lower teeth to protect them from grinding during sleep. It works similarly to a sports mouthguard. The guard creates a barrier against the upper and lower teeth, preventing them from crashing against each other and causing wear and tear. Even when you grind your teeth, the guard absorbs the tension and prevents jaw, head, and facial pain that people commonly feel in the morning.

Night Guard Options for Braces

While you can wear a night guard with braces, there are several considerations to keep in mind to ensure that you don’t disturb your orthodontic treatment, worsen your bruxism, or experience discomfort.

The most significant factor is that you will need to change your guard after a while since your teeth will shift into new positions. When it comes to night guard options, you can go with the following:

  • Over-the-counter night guards: These include stock and boil-and-bite mouth guards. They are available in your nearest drug store or online in various materials and sizes. The boil-and-bite guard is better than a stock one because it molds around your teeth, offering a custom fit as your teeth continuously shift. Unfortunately, it can be challenging to get the best fit due to braces. Similarly, many over-the-counter guards are bulky, low-quality, and don’t offer the best fit. Please note that a poorly fit guard can damage your braces and cause significant discomfort.
  • Custom-made night guards: Whileit might be more expensivesince you’ll need to get several guards until your orthodontic treatment is complete, custom guards are still your best option. These guards use impressions of your mouth, providing the perfect fit, comfort, and protection. Your dentist will evaluate your guard’s fit as your teeth move to ensure everything works perfectly. Custom guards are especially essential for people with average to severe bruxism.

Can Braces Improve Bruxism?

Surprisingly, your orthodontic treatment can help improve or stop teeth grinding and clenching. For example, if your bruxism results from teeth misalignments or bite problems, correcting these problems with braces will also stop teeth grinding. Since the orthodontic treatment is often slow, you may continue to grind your teeth for a while. Similarly, the initial discomfort and stress when wearing braces can make your teeth grinding worse. Therefore, it’s essential to use a night guard until your teeth are correctly aligned.

How to Wear a Night Guard with Braces

Below are tips for wearing a night guard with braces:

  • Check the fit of your night guard regularly. Change it if it’s loose, damaged, or worn out.
  • Place and remove your night guard carefully. Try not to force it on or pull it off forcefully.
  • Maintain excellent hygiene. Clean your night guard daily to prevent plaque buildup, which can lead to infections. Brush your mouth carefully before and after removing the guards.

Are You Interested in Night Guards in Newburyport, MA?

Do you need more information about night guards for teeth grinding with braces? Contact Newburyport Family Dental to book your appointment.

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