Occlusal Splints & Mouth Guards in Vienna, VA

We offer bruxism treatment in Vienna, VA. We also make custom mouth guards to protect your smile during contact sports.

Occasional teeth grinding and clenching is common and experienced by most people at one time or another. However, for some people, teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism) is a chronic problem. Your dentist wants you to protect your smile and well-being from the potential outcome of untreated bruxism, which can include:

  • Migraines
  • Jaw pain
  • Face pain
  • Neck pain
  • Jaw disorders
  • Enamel wear
  • Tooth and restoration breakage

Dr. Sanati and Dr. Shahram have helped many people with bruxism and understand that the causes can vary widely from person to person. This is why we tailor our treatments to fit your specific needs, and we can usually provide the relief you need with a simple, custom-made nightguard—also referred to as an occlusal splint.

If you suffer from temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD), not only do we provide occlusal guards and relaxation techniques, but we also offer EPIC laser pain therapy to provide instant relief.

If you’re experiencing sleep disruption, jaw pain, or other symptoms related to TMD or bruxism, contact a member of our team to schedule a consultation and to learn whether our treatments are right for you. Also, reach out to a member of our dental team if you have any questions about bruxism, TMD, sleep apnea, or sports-related oral protection.

Meanwhile, continue reading to learn more about bruxism, related conditions, and our therapies.

What causes teeth grinding and clenching?

The result of teeth grinding is different for each person. Studies indicate that almost 70 percent of bruxism is caused by stress or anxiety that affects you while you sleep, often without your knowledge. This can be related to sleep apnea, which is a sleep condition that causes breathing cessation several times during the night.

Sleep apnea has been linked to sudden heart attack and stroke. It is essential to seek treatment if you have symptoms, which may include:

  • Snoring
  • Daytime sleepiness
  • Mood changes

Bruxism can also be related to problems with your dental bite. This occurs when your top and bottom teeth do not meet properly when chewing. Often this can be corrected with the need for orthodontics.

Missing or crooked teeth can also lead to teeth grinding and clenching.

What are the symptoms of teeth grinding and clenching?

In some cases, people only grind and clench their teeth while sleeping, but there are still signs that you may have bruxism.

If you notice jaw pain, headaches, worn teeth, or fractures, you may have bruxism and should make an appointment with your dentist in Vienna, VA.

If left untreated, bruxism may also contribute to temporomandibular joint dysfunction, often referred to as TMD or TMJ.

How can an occlusal splint help me?

The term “occlusal” refers to the position of your dental bite. Occlusal splints are a simple, non-invasive tool that we use to reduce teeth grinding and protect teeth from wear and tear. The splint is made using an acrylic resin that gently repositions the jaw as it moves from front to back and side to side. It is custom-made to fit perfectly over a few teeth or all of your teeth.

Are occlusal splints different from mouth guards?

An occlusal splint has one specific purpose – to alleviate the symptoms and problems associated with teeth grinding. Mouthguards protect the teeth during sports and other physical activities.

Dentists estimate that up to 39 percent of dental injuries occur while playing sports. We highly recommend custom mouth guards for protection if you or your child play soccer, baseball, basketball, or football or engage in non-contact activities like rollerblading and skateboarding.

Mouthguards made at Tysons Dentistry are more effective than “boil and bite” or stock versions. Custom mouthguards are durable, comfortable, and offer the best protection. We create mouth guards using exact impressions of your teeth to ensure a perfect fit that fully protects your teeth. Custom mouth guards, made to fit your teeth, also make breathing and speaking easier.

Do you offer mouth guards for sports?

Tysons Dentistry offers mouth guards designed for sports! The video below shows how Dr. Sanati makes a sports guard explicitly designed to fit your mouth. First, we make the cast from impressions taken from the patient's mouth. We trim the excess to increase the sports guard's retention. Then the cast is ready for fabrication on the vacuum-forming machine. From there, the trimmed model cast and sports guard sheet are placed under a heater to soften the lamination material. The mold is then thermoformed and pressurized by the vacuum-forming machine. 

What is EPIC laser therapy?

Epic laser therapy is an accessible technology in our dental office. It can whiten your smile and treat the pain associated with bruxism, trauma, and TMD.

Typically, this therapy takes only a few minutes, but our patients have been delighted with their results.

To learn whether EPIC laser therapy is right for you, schedule an exam with your Vienna dentist. It is our goal to relieve your pain!

What is TMD?

TMD means that the hinge-like joint that connects your lower jaw to your face is not functioning correctly. TMD is sometimes associated with bruxism.

Signs of TMD include:

  • Clicking jaw
  • Locking jaw
  • Migraines
  • Neck pain
  • Face pain

Your dentist in Vienna, VA can assess your jaw health and help relieve your symptoms with treatment.

What is sleep apnea?

Sleep apnea is a potentially dangerous sleep disorder that causes people to stop breathing for short periods during sleep. In some cases, sleep apnea is related to bruxism. In other words, stopping breathing may lead to periodic teeth clenching and grinding during rest.

Your dentist in Vienna can look for the telltale signs of sleep apnea on exam and make the appropriate recommendations.

If you have already been diagnosed with sleep apnea and are unable to use the prescribed CPAP machine, we may be able to help you.

What are the benefits of protective dental appliances?

Our protective dental appliances save your teeth from wear and breakage and contribute to your overall wellness.

A night guard, or occlusal splint, for example, can gently keep your jaws from clenching during sleep, which means less risk of breakage, cavities, gum disease, and TMD.

Contact Our Dental Office for More Information

Dr. Sanati and Dr. Shahram, our experienced dentists in Vienna, VA, find and treat the causes of teeth grinding and clenching. We want to help you get the relief you need and protect your teeth from the excessive wear and tear that results from bruxism. We also want to help prevent sports-related injuries to your smile.

Please contact our Vienna dental office if you would like more information about solutions for teeth grinding and clenching or if you would like us to create a custom-made mouth guard for you or your child.

At Tysons Dentistry, we are here to help you enjoy a comfortable and healthy smile for life.