Occlusal Splints

Teeth grinding and clenching, a condition called bruxism is incredibly common. An estimated 1 in 20 Australians has this largely nocturnal condition. Bruxism can cause tremendous damage to teeth, gums and jaw joints, and it is important to get a proper diagnosis and treatment. Usually, we can treat bruxism with a custom-made occlusal splint or night guard.

Often, people are unaware they clench and grind, but common symptoms include:

  • Waking up with a headache, facial pain or jaw pain
  • Increased tooth sensitivity as it wears tooth enamel excessively
  • Earache or tinnitus
  • Jaw stiffness or an inability to open the jaws properly

Sometimes sleeping partners will complain as bruxism can be a noisy habit.

Diagnosing Bruxism

When you visit Oasis Dental for a checkup, we can soon detect the signs of clenching and grinding as it can cause abnormal tooth wear and even tooth fractures and gum recession. Because your tooth enamel becomes worn or cracked, the risk of cavities increases, or fillings and other dental restorations may fail. If we can see you have bruxism, we can custom make an occlusal splint.

What Is an Occlusal Splint?

An occlusal splint is a specialised night guard that prevents clenching and grinding and ensures your teeth cannot contact each other during sleep. It is made from tough, odour-free and taste-free acrylic resin and fits over your teeth. If you try to grind your teeth during sleep, your teeth will glide harmlessly against the splint.

How is an Occlusal Splint Made?

The procedure to make an occlusal splint is quick and entirely painless. After your dental exam, we can book another visit where we can take a detailed digital 3-D scan of your teeth, this replaces the need for old, messy and uncomfortable tray impressions. We send the digital scan to our dental lab where they will make your night guard to our exact prescription. At your third visit, we will try in your night guard and make any necessary adjustments to ensure it feels completely comfortable to wear. We will also show you how to insert and remove the night guard and how to care for it. Wearing your occlusal splint each night will protect your teeth and can help to break the habit of bruxism.

Oasis Dental is located at G01/50 Eastlake Parade Kingston Foreshore ACT 2604. You may call (02) 6162 3888 to book your appointments.

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