John A. Cooper Jr. D.M.D.

  • General & Family Dentistry in Lancaster, PA

Mouth & Snore Guards...

Snore Guards

Mouthpiece devices -- also known as dental appliances, or mandibular advancement splints -- have been effective for many snorers, including those suffering from mild or moderate obstructive sleep apnea. They are usually small plastic devices worn in the mouth during sleep to prevent the soft throat tissues from collapsing and obstructing the airway. They do this by bringing your lower jaw forward and/or by lifting your soft palate. Some devices also stop the tongue from falling back over your windpipe.

Your dentist will usually be the one to fit these special appliances to meet your individual condition. Typically they will take a mold of your mouth and then either send off for a custom mouthpiece or fashion it themselves.

Mouth Guards

Mouth guards are coverings worn over teeth, and often used to protect teeth from injury from teeth grinding and during sports.

Most people probably grind and clench their teeth from time to time. Occasional teeth grinding, medically called bruxism, does not usually cause harm, but when teeth grinding occurs on a regular basis the teeth can be damaged and other oral health complications can arise.

Why Do People Grind Their Teeth?

Although teeth grinding can be caused by stress and anxiety, it often occurs during sleep and is more likely caused by an abnormal bite or missing or crooked teeth.

How Do I Find Out if I Grind My Teeth?

Because grinding often occurs during sleep, most people are unaware that they grind their teeth. However, a dull, constant headache or sore jaw is a telltale symptom of bruxism. Many times people learn that they grind their teeth by their loved one who hears the grinding at night.

If you suspect you may be grinding your teeth, talk to your dentist. He or she can examine your mouth and jaw for signs of bruxism, such as jaw tenderness and abnormalities in your teeth.

Why Is Teeth Grinding Harmful?

In some cases, chronic teeth grinding can result in a fracturing, loosening, or loss of teeth. The chronic grinding may wear their teeth down to stumps. When these events happen, bridges, crowns, root canals, implants, partial dentures, and even complete dentures may be needed.

Not only can severe grinding damage teeth and result in tooth loss, it can also affect your jaws, result in hearing loss, cause or worsen TMD/TMJ, and even change the appearance of your face.

 

Find out more...

The staff at Dr. Cooper's office can help you learn more about how to protect your teeth, whether it is during athletics or from grinding during your sleep. Options that will help prevent snoring can be discussed as well. Just call us to find out more!

717-392-3211