Night Guards and Bruxism, NTI
Many of our patients find that they grind (brux) or clench their teeth. If you grind your teeth, you may notice excessive wear spots in your enamel, flattening of your teeth, premature wear of your fillings, or maybe you are constantly breaking or chipping your teeth and restorations. Many times your spouse will be the one to notice grinding as it often occurs, like snoring, while you are asleep.
The most common symptom of clenching is soreness in the muscles of the face. This is particularly apparent in the morning and can be exaggerated in times of stress like moving or changing jobs. Continued grinding and clenching can, in effect, disrupt and destroy the harmony of the bones, muscles and ligaments of your jaw joints. Collectively, these symptoms of the jaw joint are categorized as TMD or, Tempero-Muscular Disease. TMD can be very complicated to treat but the vast majority of cases are self-limiting. That is, they may come and go on their own with little intervention by us.
Because of this, we lean towards the most conservative and reversible treatments for most of our patients. Very severe cases may require different treatment methods. In general, if you are symptomatic and have pain in your face or jaw joints, we recommend a soft diet, medicines like Ibuprofen (Advil or Motrin) which are anti-inflammatory pain controllers, a short course of muscle relaxants in some cases and treatment with a bite splint to relieve the pressure on the jaw joint and/or prevent further wear of the teeth.
In addition to traditional nightguards and bruxing appliances like the Comfort Hard/Soft, we are pleased to provide the NTI/TSS clenching/bruxing suppression system. It is the only system FDA approved for the treatment of migraine headaches in addition to helping reduce and eliminate facial pain.
To learn about the NTI system, click here.
To download a brochure with an overview of other types of bite splints we have available, click here.