About Night Guards
Do you wake up with excruciating headaches or jaw pain when you were feeling fine the night before? Do you find yourself clenching your teeth at night? Have some of your teeth started looking flattened? If you answered "yes," to these questions, the reason for your pain could be bruxism, also known as teeth grinding. Bruxism is not a disease and is more a habitual motion that occurs whenever you’re feeling stressed or anxious. To protect your teeth at night, it may be recommended by our team at City Smiles DC that you wear a custom night guard to protect your teeth as you sleep, so you don’t subconsciously grind your teeth.
Bruxism, affects more than 10 – 15% of adults, and can cause jaw pain, headaches, tooth pain, swelling, and other symptoms. Over time, teeth grinding can damage the teeth and cause expensive dental problems. Our Washington, DC board-certified dentist, Dr. Stuart Ross, may recommend making a high quality, custom night guard to help you stop damaging your teeth, and get a decent night's sleep. Without a night guard, you run the risk of damaging your teeth even further. The teeth (especially the molars) could be ground flat, causing uneven pressure around the mouth and shifting teeth out of place. Over time, the tooth wear could eventually lead to tooth loss. Some patients have even experienced gum recession as a result of pressure on their teeth, which exposes the roots of the teeth to potential health risks.
"This review only contains a rating"- A.P. / Google / Mar 19, 2017
"I was referred to Dr. Ross for veneers. Wow.....I've never felt so comfortable in the dentist chair until my visit at City Smiles. Dr. Ross and Tina were so professional, warm, and comforting. I had a lengthy procedure - 6 veneers in one day. The technology they offer creates veneers almost instantly. They talked me through every step of the process. I highly recommend Dr. Ross for veneers and plan to use City Smiles for my regular visits."- K.A. / Yelp / Nov 27, 2017
"A completely different experience than I am accustomed to from a dental practice. I have been to two types of dentists before. One has the dentists doing the cleaning and x-rays and just about everything else. The other had a hygienist do the cleaning and the dentist would come in for about 10 seconds and say "You need to brush and floss more". In either case the level of care was probably average. Dr. Ross's office was a completely new experience. Based on his credentials and the scattered gray hair (he seems to have a great humbled sense of humor too), he has been practicing for a long time so he has a lot of experience, but it looks like he keeps up with all of the latest technology and has not stagnated. Some of the equipment is impressive. I am an Engineer so it was interesting to hear about some of it and Dr Ross was excited to show me. Dr. Ross spent more time with me than any other health care provider I have ever seen. He took many close up digital images of my teeth from every angle and used a digital X-Ray machine. He was instantly able to show me exactly where the problems were and it was very clear. I could also see quite clearly that I needed to get a sharper razor. All of the other dentists I have been to look with their eyes and try to explain in words what they are seeing. It might be obvious to them but the pictures really helped me. The hygienist was very professional and thorough. If your hygienist is not referencing X-Rays and close up images as they are cleaning your teeth and gums, they are behind the times. They are flying blind. You might get out of your dentist with a checkup and cleaning for $99.95, but it looks like Earl Sheib cleaned your teeth. By the way, the 1990's called, they want their dentist back.The receptionist staff was friendly and patient. I think with the proliferation of online reviews, many practices are paying more attention to how patients are treated by employees other than just the doctor. I have noticed an improvement at other dentist's/doctor's offices and it is very clear here that it is important. Dr. Ross was forthcoming on the costs of the various procedures I should consider, some of which he could provide and others he could not. Once I saw the pictures and he explained how not fixing certain issues would degrade my teeth faster since the hard enamel is worn or chipped, it made sense what I needed to do. I have had a few crashes/hits that affected my teeth so I was not expecting the best report card, however, I did not feel pressured to do anything at any point. In fact, I left the office without making any follow up appointments. No medical procedure is cheap so there are tough decisions to be made. I will be going back to have some more work done soon though, and will schedule the rest over time. I would rather deal with the issues up front while I am younger than be getting a ton of bridges, root canals, implants ... when I am 75 which would ultimately cost a lot more money. And I will have better looking teeth now. Probably like remodeling the kitchen right after you buy the house or right before you sell it. Do I want a nice smile now or do I want to look good at my funeral? I came in from Rockville to specifically to see Dr. Ross because my wife went to see him based on the great reviews and a recommendation from a friend. She had nothing but good things to say when she came home and had two teeth perfectly repaired. There are plenty of other dentists between my house and the middle of DC but I felt like I needed to re-baseline what I should expect from a dentist. Glad I went. There is a good pastry shop, Paul, right around the corner too. Dirty up all of the work you just had done. 3% of the reason I trekked in to DC. And no matter what they say, those donuts are not "oven baked" they are deep fried. Maybe I should write a review of Paul while I am at it."- R.B. / Google / Nov 12, 2017
"Amazing experience. No pain, clean teeth, lots of knowledge, high tech without the price. Don't forget the M&M dispensers everywhere!!! Keeps you coming back!"- M.R. / Yelp / Oct 24, 2017
"Dr. Ross and his team are wonderful. Highly recommend checking them out!"- B.S. / Google / Oct 22, 2017
What to Expect
Once the patient decides to get a night guard, they will schedule an appointment at their dentist to have impressions of the upper and lower teeth made. The impressions will be sent to a dental laboratory where a custom-fit night guard will be crafted for the patient. Once the night guard is returned to the dentist, the patient will come in to have their night guard fitted by their dentist.
The night guard can last for several years with proper home care. The patient should clean the mouth guard before and after each use. Depending on the type of material used when making the mouth guard, the dentist will give the patient more specific care instructions. Patients should bring their night guard to all future dental appointments so the dentist can check for general wear and decide when it needs to be replaced.
Compared to over-the-counter night guards, custom night guards are more expensive, but some or all of the cost may be covered by the patient’s dental insurance if it is medically necessary. A night guard custom fit by a dentist can cost more than one purchased over-the-counter, but they are more comfortable and last longer than store-bought night guards.
While some night guards can be bought at your local drugstore, it’s more advantageous to have a custom night guard made for you. Drugstore night guards do not last very long, doesn’t cover all of your teeth, and can often be ill-fitting. A custom night guard from Dr. Ross could be just the thing that keeps your smile from needing expensive dental work down the road. You can feel rest assured that the night guard fits correctly, comfortably, and protects your teeth fully. Store-bought night guards don’t offer this type of reassurance.
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A Quiet Night's Sleep
If you are one of the 30 – 40 million Americans, who wake up with headaches or mouth pain, you should ask your dentist about a custom night guard that can protect your teeth from grinding and clenching. Not only will you get a better night’s sleep, but you’ll also protect your teeth from serious damage. Come to our office for an appointment to talk to Dr. Ross about night guards today.