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About Dental Appliances
Dental appliances are designed to help protect and preserve the health of oral structures, and the health of our entire bodies.
Dental Appliance FAQs
What are considered to be removable dental appliances?
Removable dental appliances are devices that are worn to protect or improve oral health, and can be removed without a visit to the dentist. Removable dental appliances are useful when the teeth and other oral structures need some extra support without the added bulk of a permanent fixture.
Some common removable dental appliances are certain retainers, sports mouth guards, night guards, clear aligners, some sleep apnea devices, and dentures.
How should I clean my mouth guard?
Whether you wear a mouth guard to protect your smile when playing sports or use a mouth guard at night to help prevent teeth grinding, clenching, snoring or sleep apnea, you will need to keep your mouth guard clean. Fortunately, cleaning a mouth guard is easy.
Your dentist will be sure to provide you with instructions specifically related to your brand of mouth guard but in most cases, mouth guards should be rinsed well in cool running water before and after wearing. Avoid using toothpaste, mouthwash or a toothbrush on your mouth guard as this can cause damage. Simply soak your mouth guard in denture cleaner according to the package instructions.
Storing your mouth guard in the container supplied will also help to keep it clean and prevent it from becoming damaged.
What are sleep apnea mouthpieces?
Sleep apnea mouthpieces, also called jaw advancing devices (JAD) or mandibular advancement devices (MAD), are designed to move the jaw forward, increasing the size of the upper airway and reducing air resistance, helping to make breathing easier during sleep. Some versions of these sleep apnea mouthpieces are adjustable, allowing the wearer to determine how far forward their jaw will sit.
Another type of sleep apnea mouthpiece is a tongue retaining device. These devices are designed to hold the tongue in place in order to prevent the airway from becoming blocked during sleep.
If you suffer from mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea, wearing a sleep apnea mouthpiece when you go to bed may help you to get a better night's sleep.
How long do mouth guards last?
How long a mouth guard lasts largely depends upon how often it is worn and how well it is cared for.
With proper care, your mouth guard could last up to five years. However, it may be a good idea to purchase a new mouth guard annually since these hard-working dental appliances tend to suffer from significant wear and tear and become less effective over time.
Mouth guards for children should be replaced every 6-12 months due to a combination of wear and tear and your child's developing facial structure. Your child's mouth guard should also be replaced at any time if you notice that it is damaged.
How do night guards work?
A night guard is a custom-fitted dental appliance made of acrylic that fits snugly over your teeth. These dental appliances are designed to prevent your teeth from coming into contact with each other, helping to prevent tooth wear, cracks, gum recession, and some tooth movement.
Although night guards aren't always successful at preventing nighttime jaw clenching and teeth grinding, for many people these thin acrylic shields act as a deterrent that helps to curb the urge to clench or grind teeth.
The design of night guards also helps to hold teeth in their correct positions and distribute the force caused by clenching or grinding more evenly across the jaw so that individual teeth will not be overly impacted by these behaviours.
More from our blog about Dental Appliances
So, you’ve been diagnosed with an orthodontic issue – now to decide on treatment options. Orthodontic treatment is a significant investment of time and money. You want to make sure you’re using the right product. In this post, we look at some commonly used devices and products.
Sleep disorders such as sleep apnea can impact your health. There are many dental appliances that can help treat this disorder. Here, we explain some of your options.