Your smile is one of your most precious assets, and it's essential to safeguard it in various situations. Two crucial protective devices in dentistry are night guards and sports guards. Whether you need to protect your teeth from grinding and clenching during sleep or safeguard them during sports activities, these guards play a vital role in maintaining oral health. Both types of guards are custom-made to fit your mouth perfectly. They are made of soft plastic that is comfortable to wear and won't interfere with breathing or speaking. At Inverness Smiles: John Aiken, DMD, we offer both kinds of guards. Our dentist in Birmingham, AL, will first take impressions of your teeth and then send them to the lab for fabrication. You'll return to our office to try on your new guard to ensure it fits appropriately before receiving it.
Night guards in Birmingham, AL, also known as occlusal guards, are custom-made dental appliances designed to protect your teeth from the harmful effects of bruxism, which is the habit of grinding or clenching your teeth during sleep. This condition can lead to various dental issues, including tooth damage, jaw pain, and headaches. In-office night guards are created to fit your teeth precisely, providing comfort and optimal protection. They act as a barrier between your upper and lower teeth, preventing them from grinding against each other and minimizing the damage caused by bruxism.
The Role of 3D Printing in Night Guards
Instead of traditional molds, a digital impression of your teeth is obtained using an intraoral scanner. This process is quicker and more comfortable than traditional impressions. The scanned data is then used to design a custom night guard on a computer, ensuring a precise fit. The design is sent to a 3D printer, which manufactures the night guard layer by layer, resulting in a high-quality, durable appliance. The night guard is thoroughly examined to ensure it meets the exact specifications and fits perfectly.
Sports guards in Birmingham, AL, also known as athletic mouth protectors, are essential for athletes engaging in contact or collision sports. They serve as a protective barrier for the teeth, preventing injuries resulting from impacts or falls during sports activities. Like night guards, sports guards are custom-made in the office to ensure a snug and comfortable fit. They absorb and distribute the force of impact, reducing the risk of broken teeth, jaw injuries, and concussions.
The Role of 3D Printing in Sports Guards
Similar to night guards, 3D printing technology has improved the precision and comfort of sports guards. Dentists can use 3D scanning to create digital models of a patient's teeth, ensuring a snug fit that maximizes protection. 3D printing allows customized, resilient, breathable sports guards to accommodate specific sporting needs and preferences.
Night and sports guards are essential for maintaining oral health and safeguarding your smile. Visit Inverness Smiles: John Aiken, DMD at 5291 Valleydale Rd Suite 129, Birmingham, AL 35242or, or call (205) 995-3989 to discuss your specific needs and explore the benefits of custom night and sports guards tailored to you.