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Dental night guards are a thin oral appliance, similar to a retainer, that covers the biting surface of your teeth.
You wear it while you sleep to prevent bruxism, a condition in which you grind or clench your teeth. It results in heavy forces on the teeth.
Bruxism can have significant side effects and impact how you chew, eat, and speak. Wearing a night guard will help you prevent serious damage.
Other benefits of wearing a night guard include:
A night guard can shift your teeth. This is because night guards may put pressure on your teeth and slowly but surely move them over time.
However, night guards aren't meant to shift your teeth. They're designed to protect your teeth from damage while you sleep.
These are the signs that your night guard is shifting your teeth:
Ensuring the night guard fits well in your mouth can help prevent tooth shifting. Night guards that don't fit properly can put pressure on your teeth or cause discomfort.
If it doesn't fit right, try using a different size or shape. You might also consider having a dentist make a new one for you.
They can create a custom night guard specifically shaped to fit your mouth. A properly made custom-made night guard will not shift your teeth and will fit more comfortably.
See your dentist immediately if you suspect your night guard is shifting your teeth. Using a night guard every night helps keep your teeth protected. It will also prevent other problems with your temporomandibular joint (TMJ).
Habitual wear can help stop tooth damage and facial pain. If you only wear your night guard sometimes, bruxism can still damage your teeth, but at a slower pace.
However, contact your dentist immediately if your teeth are shifting while wearing a night guard. They can create a new night guard for you.
During your visit, your dentist will evaluate your situation. If your teeth have shifted, they can tell you what needs to be done. They may also recommend you to an orthodontist if necessary.
Here are some tips for getting used to your night guard:
The types of night guards include:
Night guards protect your teeth at night. Some night guards may shift your teeth, especially if they don't fit correctly. If this happens, see your dentist as soon as possible. They can replace the night guard with a custom-made one that won't shift your teeth.
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