Houston general dentists prescribe Protective acrylic splints, colloquially known as nightguards, for cosmetic dental problems. These mouthpieces also offer medical benefits to patients, and they provide adjunct supports to a variety of traditional and restorative treatment options.
Research and experience has consistently demonstrated that the consistent use of oral appliances can save patients both discomfort and money. Many problems that would otherwise grow more severe over timeand cost more to treatcan be solved if acted on early enough.
Both general and cosmetic dentists will frequently recommend nightguards to help alleviate muscular problems in the face and jaws. When they are used in this fashion, a nightguard helps the patient achieve a very significant relaxation of facial and jaw muscles.
Acrylic splints are also used as a form of preventative dental care for a number of medical conditions. In this sense, they can be to other forms of basic dental care such as fluorides, sealants, and floss. The problems they help address, though, are much more serious than the cavities and plaque that basic hygiene is intended to prevent.
Protective acrylic splints are an excellent preventative treatment for teeth grinding. Teeth grinding is also known as bruxism. Many times, people do not even realize that they are grinding their teeth until a significant other points it out to them, or until they notice tooth sensitivity or aching in their mouths. After coming in for a dental checkup, a close examination of the teeth reveals damage to enamel because of excessive pressure and grinding.
Acrylic splints keep teeth from making contact with each other by separating the posterior teeth from the anterior teeth. This causes less pressure to be placed on the joints, and the disk within the joints as well.
TMJ dysfunction can also be treated with nightguards. Temporomandibular disorder, also known as TMD, is a cycle of pain, muscle spasms, and joint imbalance that occurs at the temporomandibular joint. This joint, also known as the TMJ, resides at the point where the joint meets the skull. Only a thin disc of cartilage cushions the two bones, and only five muscles support the joint.
When balance is lost between the muscles, cartilage, and bone, severe symptoms can erupt that include headaches, earaches, clicking sounds in the joint, aches in the joint, and difficulty opening and closing ones mouth.
In TMD patients with, nightguards are used to help control the pain and imbalance. Full time use of a nightguard, in conjunction with other medical treatments, can drastically lessen the sometime severe pain of this condition.
Periodontal disease can also be treated with a nightguard. There are four stages of Periodontitis that range from the common gingivitis to advanced gum disease that can cause other health problems in major organs such as the heart and the lungs.
In patients with moderate to advanced Periodontitis, nightguards are often prescribed by Houston general dentists to distribute force, decrease trauma, and to aid in the healing processes that follow periodontal surgery or LANAP procedures.
Cosmetic Dentistry is a specialized field that requires extensive knowledge and experience to be done correctly. The Medical Center Dental Group in Houston, Texas brings all of that and more to the direct benefit of each and every patient we treat. Although we are located in the world famous Houston Medical Center at Scurlock Towers, we routinely see dental patients who travel from Austin, San Antonio, Dallas, Beaumont Midland and Houston, Texas to see Dr. Dale Brant, Dr. Charles Campbell or Dr. Elizabeth OSullivan-Winslow for their cosmetic denistry services.