Occlusal / Night Guards
Occlusal guards (also called night guards, splints and bruxing appliances) are made of rigid or semi-rigid materials like laboratory-processed acrylic. They are generally made to be worn over the biting surfaces of either the upper or lower teeth, and are easily inserted and removed by the patient.
Occlusal guards accomplish three main functions:
- Evenly distribute bite forces to protect the teeth from stresses that can crack or wear them abnormally.
- Protect the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) from excessive bite stress that can produce pain, damage to the jaw joint components, and dysfunction.
- Reduce the heavy forces generated by the jaw-closing muscles.
To watch a brief video about occlusal guards, click on our Dental Videos tab, then scroll down to "Other" and click on "Night Guards".
It is important to understand how occlusal guards work, to decide whether you are a patient who might benefit from their use. Please contact our office today to make an appointment to discuss occlusal guards, and whether they are right for you.