The team at Trembath Dental use an Occlusal Splint (also known as a bite splint, bite plane, or night guard) which is a removable dental appliance that is tailor made
It’s carefully moulded to fit onto the upper or lower arches of a patient’s teeth. Predominately worn at night when most people tend to clench or grind their teeth, the splint can reduce the amount of grinding pressure that is transferred to the teeth by unconscious grinding. The splint can offer relief for the jaw muscles, reduce headaches and protect the teeth from wear and breakage. Splints are therefore effective in stress management (by preventing teeth clenching and grinding in times of stress) and in treating temporomandibular joint disorder.
WHAT ARE THE SYMPTOMS OF TEETH GRINDING?
Some symptoms of teeth clenching and grinding can involve:
- Aching jaws and teeth in the morning or during the day
- Difficulty chewing food
- Tension headaches and stress in the temple region
- Jaw joint (temporomandibular joint) pain
- Severely worn teeth
- Broken, chipped or cracked teeth
- Teeth touching when completing daily tasks
TEETH GRINDING AND TEMPOROMANDIBULAR JOINT DISORDER
The temporomandibular joints are found on either side of your jaw, connecting your jawbone to your skull. Temporomandibular joint disorder causes pain and discomfort to the temporomandibular joints and the muscles responsible for jaw movement. As a result of this pain, those with the disorder tend to clench or grind their teeth.
RISK FACTORS ASSOCIATED WITH TEMPOROMANDIBULAR JOINT DISORDER
- Arthritis (rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis);
- Any injuries sustained by the jaw;
- Constant clenching and grinding of teeth;
- Connective tissue diseases that can affect the temporomandibular joints.
HOW WILL DR TREMBATH DIAGNOSE TEMPOROMANDIBULAR JOINT DISORDER?
A diagnosis of temporomandibular joint disorder can be made by:
- Listening for any abnormal sounds made when your jaw is opened and closed;
- Observing if there is any limitation in jaw movement;
- Applying pressure to various areas on the jaw to identify whether or not there is pain.
WHAT TO EXPECT DURING YOUR APPOINTMENT FOR A SPLINT
Two visits will be required to ensure that your custom-made splint fits your mouth perfectly:
- During the first appointment, Dr Trembath will take an impression of both your upper and lower teeth. This impression will be used to make your splint;
During your second appointment, Dr Trembath, will assess the fitting of the brand-new splint to ensure that it fits comfortably.
If you think you may be suffering from tooth grinding or for more information on splints, contact us here today.