Dental night guards are a type of oral appliance that patients wear during sleep to protect their teeth from grinding and clenching. Teeth grinding and clenching (also known as bruxism) affects scores of people worldwide and can lead to a host of dental problems, including chipped or broken teeth. Luckily, simple dentistry treatments exist to help prevent bruxism and damage.

You can protect your smile (even while you’re sleeping!) with custom-made night guards. Simply call (630) 369-3120 today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Thomas F. Brown in Naperville, IL.

In this blog, we tell you everything you need to know about night guards. From how they work to how much they cost, we cover it all!

Why do I need a night guard?

There are several reasons why someone may need a night guard. Bruxism is the most common reason, but patients can also use night guards to treat sleep apnea, snoring, and temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). 

For people who grind or clench their teeth at night, a night guard can help protect the teeth and prevent damage. It can also help alleviate jaw pain and headaches caused by bruxism-related TMDs. For those with sleep apnea or snoring, a night guard can help keep the airway open and improve breathing.

Are there different kinds of night guards?

Yes, there are several types of night guards available, including:

  • Custom-made
  • Over-the-counter
  • Boil-and-bite

Dentists create custom-made night guards. This means that dentists can craft the perfect appliance for you using digital impressions and advanced materials. Typically, these types of night guards offer the best fit and protection, but are also the most expensive. 

Anyone can purchase over-the-counter night guards, finding them in common places, like:

  • Drug stores
  • Grocery stores
  • Online

Usually, over-the-counter appliances are less expensive than custom-made ones, but they are also less comfortable and effective.

Boil-and-bite night guards are a middle ground between custom-made and over-the-counter options. Patients simply soften the guards in hot water and then mold them over their teeth as they cool to fit the patient’s teeth. While they do offer a better fit than over-the-counter guards, they are not as precise as custom-made guards.

How do night guards work?

Night guards work by creating a barrier between the upper and lower teeth. This is done by simply placing the personalized trays gently over the teeth, which reduces the pressure and friction caused by grinding and clenching.

How much do night guards cost?

The cost of a night guard can vary depending on the type and where it is purchased

For example, custom-made night guards from a dentist typically range from $300 to $1,000. Over-the-counter night guards are the least expensive, ranging from $10 to $50. Boil-and-bite night guards fall somewhere in the middle, with prices ranging from $30 to $150.

See If Custom-Made Appliances Are Right For You

If you’re living with bruxism, jaw pain, or sleep apnea, a simple dental night guard may be exactly what you need. Ask Dr. Thomas F. Brown and his caring dental team in Naperville, IL, today to find out! Request appointments here, or call (630) 369-3120 for more information.