If you’ve been living with persistent jaw pain, ear pain and headaches, you could have TMJ – Temporo-mandibular jaw disorder. TMJ can often be traced back to an improper bite, misaligned jaw joints, or an injury to the jaw or face.
Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)
Most people probably grind and clench their teeth from time to time. Occasional teeth grinding does not usually cause harm, but when teeth grinding occurs on a regular basis the teeth can be damaged and other oral structure can be compromised. Teeth grinding can be caused by habit, stress or anxiety, it often occurs during sleep. It can also be caused by a sleep disorder such as sleep apnea. Because you can grind your teeth at night and not even know it until complications develop, it’s important to learn the warning signs and to seek routine dental care. Several symptoms are commonly associated with bruxism, including hypersensitive teeth, aching jaw muscles, and headaches. Bruxism may cause tooth wear, and even damage or break teeth and dental restorations such as crowns and fillings.
There are a few different dental approaches to bruxism treatment. The first is a bruxism mouth guard or night guard. Night Guard can play a very important role in protecting your teeth and restorations from grinding and clenching. Dentist can make a custom bruxism guard called a night guard specially designed to fit your mouth. Another dental appliance used for bruxism treatment is called NTI appliance. This type of bruxism guard is a custom-made piece of hard plastic that fits over your top or bottom teeth. This bruxism guard fits over just the front teeth to prevent clenching of the back molars. The NTI protects teeth, muscles and joints by suppressing undesired muscle contraction by almost 70%.
During sleep, muscles and soft tissues in the throat and mouth relax, shrinking the airway. This increases the velocity of airflow during breathing. As the velocity of required air is increased, soft tissues like the soft palate and uvula vibrate. The vibrations of these tissues result in noisy breathing or snoring. Snoring can be a real problem, not only for the person who snores, but also for the partner and other family members who live with the snorer. Your doctor will also examine your throat and nasal passages for any signs of nasal, mouth, dental, jaw, or throat deformities that may contribute to snoring.
For the majority of snorers, the most affordable, non-invasive, comfortable, effective snoring solution is dentist-prescribed snoring preventative device such as Silent Nite. Silent Nite is a custom-fabricated dental device that moves the lower jaw into a forward position, increasing space in the airway tube and reducing air velocity and soft tissue vibration. This affordable device is flexible, thin and comfortable, and it helps to prevent the disruptive, unhealthy effects of snoring and sleep apnea