You may need a nightguard.


The dentist may recommend a night guard for either bruxism (clinching and grinding your teeth) or the related pain with your temporomandibular Joint (TMJ). Pain with the temporomandibular joint and the surrounding muscles is usually referred to as temopromandibular dysfuntion (TMD). Bruxism and TMD can combine to cause multiple problems, such as:


  • cracked teeth
  • loose teeth
  • headaches
  • ear pain
  • clicking, popping, and grinding sound in the joint
  • pain in the joint
  • difficulty with opening your mouth


A hard nightguard is a custom-fit appliance that fits over your upper or lower teeth at night. It has a smooth flat surface that allows your opposing teeth to move smoothly. This night guard prevents your teeth from locking together, which in turn reduces the stress and pressure on your teeth and joints. Over time this appliance can reduce the tendency to clench and grind your teeth as well.

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