Oral Sleep Appliances

If you often wake up with jaw pain, earaches, or headaches, or find yourself clenching or grinding your teeth, you may have a common condition called bruxism.

Although the causes of bruxism are not really known, several factors may be involved. Stressful situations at home, school, or work, problems in sleeping, an abnormal bite, and crooked or missing teeth may contribute to bruxism.

Many people do not even know they grind their teeth, because it often occurs during sleep. If not corrected, bruxism can lead to broken teeth, cracked teeth, damaged restorations, or even tooth loss.

There is an easy, non-invasive treatment for bruxism. Nightguards are an easy way to prevent the wear and damage that teeth-grinding cause over time. Custom-made by a dentist from soft material to fit your teeth, a nightguard is inserted over your top or bottom arch and prevents contact with the opposing teeth.

Choosing the right mouthguard is essential. There are three basic types of mouthguards: the pre-made nightguard, the “boil-and-bite” nightguard, and a custom-made nightguard from our office. When you choose a nightguard, be sure to pick one that is tear-resistant, comfortable and well fitted for your mouth, easy to keep clean, and does not prevent you from breathing properly.

A nightguard created in our office will fit all these requirements, as it will be custom-made just for your teeth.

What is a Mandibular Advancement Device?

If you snore at night, then a mandibular advancement device (MAD) may represent a solution and a better night’s sleep! The MAD is a specially designed dental device that gently helps keep the lower jaw, or mandible, in a forward position, to increase the space between the airway passage and help you breathe better so you can get a full, quiet night’s sleep.

Some devices also stop the tongue from falling back over your windpipe. Dr. Richter will fit these special appliances to meet your individual condition.

Is a MAD comfortable?

The answer is simple: YES! A mandibular advancement device is made to be comfortable, so you can sleep without even noticing you’re wearing it. It does not prevent you from breathing with your mouth open and will eliminate snoring for patients with sinus congestion or allergies.

You may experience some slight stiffness of the jaw for the first few mornings after wearing the device, but this feeling is only temporary, and will go away after you wake up and remove the device.

To learn more about a mandibular advancement device, contact our practice and schedule an appointment and consultation.