Custom-fit mouth guards are prescribed and created by a dental professional from thermoplastic material and are based on a detailed mold taken of your mouth and teeth. They can be made for either sports or for nighttime teeth grinding and are created differently depending on the intended use. They're highly personalized, as your dentist can adjust the thickness of the mouthguard, and they're designed to fit perfectly in your mouth with no adjustments needed.
First, your dentist will take an impression of your teeth. This is generally done using a dental putty that forms to all the crevices of each tooth and creates an exact mold of your smile. The mold is then sent to the lab, where the actual mouthguard is created. The structure is made by layering superheated plastic to precise specifications and is then cooled to create an extremely durable piece of dental wear.
Because custom mouth guards are so precisely made, they are able to provide you with optimal safety and comfort. The level of protection afforded by custom-fitted mouthguards is unrivalled by any other mouthguard, and their durability is enhanced by the snug shape, which hugs each tooth closely, eliminating unwanted movement.
For more information on customized mouth guards, please call Laurel Lakes Cosmetic Dentistry at 301-498-6511 today.
If you're experiencing chronic headaches and migraines because of involuntary nighttime teeth clenching, let Laurel Lakes Cosmetic Dentistry help you with a night guard. A night guard is a thin, transparent device that is worn over the biting surface of your teeth while you sleep to prevent contact between the upper and lower teeth. Night guards have also proven to be an effective remedy for patients who are suffering from the effects of grinding and clenching their teeth while sleeping.Read more about Night Guards
Oral Cancer Screening
Did you know that oral cancer is the sixth deadliest cancer in the world with roughly 30,000 new cases diagnosed each year? It's a growing problem among people age 40 and older, especially among smokers, smokeless tobacco users and drinkers. When detected and treated early, however, oral cancer is 83% curable.
Early detection of abnormalities that develop in the tissues of your lips, mouth and throat is essential in preventing possibly severe health issues from developing, such as oral cancer and other oral diseases. To further our goal of protecting your health, your Laurel Lakes Cosmetic Dentistry dentist is now utilizing the innovative VELscope system to best assess your overall oral health. This system is quick, non-invasive and extremely helpful in detecting oral abnormalities.
The VELscope is a wireless, handheld scope that uses natural tissue fluorescence to enhance the way clinicians visualize abnormalities that might not be apparent or even visible to the naked eye. It is used in conjunction with the traditional intra and extraoral head and neck exam and does not require any dyes or prolonged testing procedures. In fact, a VELscope exam can be performed in the dentist's office during a routine exam in about two minutes. Its use in everyday practice can provide timely information to dentists and hygienists to enable enhanced visualization of abnormal tissue.
Oral cancer screening with VELscope is used at Laurel Lakes Cosmetic Dentistry as part of a comprehensive exam. Call us at 301-498-6511 to schedule an appointment.
Struggling with snoring and sleeplessness? Call your dentist. Snoring and sleep disturbances are often signs of obstructive sleep apnea, and your oral health could be to blame. The condition causes repeated breathing interruptions throughout the night; the pauses can last from a few seconds to minutes and may occur 30 or more times per hour. They happen because the airway is obstructed.
The first sign of sleep apnea is often tooth grinding (bruxism). Dentists look for worn tooth surfaces, a sign that a patient grinds his or her teeth. Grinding is just one oral health sign of sleep apnea. A small jaw, a tongue with scalloped edges or redness in the throat (caused by snoring a lot, which is another symptom of sleep apnea) are also signs.Read more about Sleep Apnea
Problems with your jaw and the muscles in your face that control it are known as temporomandibular disorders (TMD, sometimes referred to as TMJ). These disorders occur as a result of problems associated with the temporomandibular joint, which is the hinge joint on each side of your head in front of your ears that connects the lower jawbone to your skull.
Possible causes of the disorder are:
- Injury to the jaw, the joint or muscles of the head and neck, such as from a heavy blow or whiplash
- Grinding or clenching your teeth
- Dislocation of the ball and socket
- Arthritis in the TMJ
Common symptoms include:
- Pain or tenderness in your face, jaw joint area, neck and shoulders, and in or around the ear when you chew or speak
- Problems when you try to open your mouth wide
- Jaws that get "stuck" or "locked" in the open- or closed-mouth position
- Clicking, popping, or grating sounds in the jaw joint when you open or close your mouth or chew
- A tired feeling in your face
- Trouble chewing or a sudden uncomfortable bite, as if the upper and lower teeth are not fitting together properly
- Swelling on the side of your face
TMD can be painful. If you're experiencing any symptoms, call Laurel Lakes Cosmetic Dentistry at 301-498-6511 right away.