Do you wake up in the morning with a sore jaw or headache? Has your dentist mentioned that it looks like the surface of your teeth is worn down or damaged? If you suffer from bruxism, or nighttime teeth grinding, chances are you have heard about teeth grinding guards. Maybe you have heard them called dental guards, mouth guards, nocturnal bite plates, or bite splints. But with so many different teeth grinding guard types available, how do you know which one is right for you? At SportingSmiles, we offer 4 different nighttime teeth grinding guards, each designed for different levels of comfort and grinding. Here we will take a closer look at the different types to help give you a better understanding.
Soft teeth grinding guards are the most commonly used guards. They work best for those with mild or occasional teeth grinding but are not for those that are heavy grinders. This guard also works well for heavy teeth clenching. Over-the-counter stock guards offer a lower cost than custom-fit though they don’t offer the same protection. At SportingSmiles, our soft night teeth grinding guard is created from one layer of 3mm clear soft EVA material.
- Offers the best comfort
- Easy to get used to wearing at night
- Stock guards (non-custom fit) can be purchased from local drug stores
- Only good for mild teeth grinding
- Not as durable and have a shorter lifespan
Hard Teeth Grinding Guards
Hard teeth grinding guards work for those with severe cases of teeth grinding. They are made from acrylic and are extremely rigid. This type of guard must be custom-fit with the use of a dental mold through a dentist or by using a self-impression mold. At SportingSmiles, our single hard teeth grinding night guard is made from 1mm clear ultra-thin hard laminate but is trimmed to only cover the top half of the teeth. This makes it less bulky than other hard night guards.
- Very durable and can hold up to severe grinding
- Custom-fit to ensure complete coverage and protection
- Thicker and bulkier than soft guards
- Very rigid without much give
- Can be uncomfortable to wear
- May take time getting used to
The hard material in hard guards are typically very rigid, making them uncomfortable for many users to wear. At SportingSmiles, we have addressed that issue. Our flexible super hard dental night guard offers the best of both worlds. With new advanced material, this night guard is flexible but extremely dense, making it perfect for those with even the most severe teeth grinding. This flexible material makes it one of the most comfortable night guards to wear will also offering the strongest protection against teeth grinding.
Dual Laminate Grinding Guards
Dual laminate teeth grinding guards, also known as bilaminar, are guards that combine the inner comfort of a soft guard with the hard, outer shell. They provide the same protection against teeth grinding as a hard guard while offering a more comfortable fit. At SportingSmiles, our dual laminate guard features a 1mm soft interior with a 2mm hard external surface.
- Works well for severe grinding
- More comfortable than traditional hard guards
- Bulkier than other guards
- Take time to adjust to
- Not recommended for heavy teeth clenching (better option is a flexible hard guard)
Which teeth grinding guard type will work best for you depends on your level of teeth grinding and clenching, as well as how comfortable you are wearing them during sleep. No guard is any good if it sits on your bedside table because you can’t wear it. At SportingSmiles, we custom make all our nighttime teeth grinding guards using our patented at-home self-impression kit. Following the video instructions, you make a mold of your teeth at home and return it to us. We make a custom-fit guard the same way your dentist does, all without the extra cost of a dental visit. For more information visit our full page on teeth grinding guards.