Get out of pain
One of the most effective ways that we can help people with chronic jaw pain is through an occlusal guard, we call it. It’s almost like a mouth guard, but it’s made out of a very hard material. When they clench or grind on that, it allows them to do that on a material that’s smooth. It protects the teeth underneath. It protects the teeth that are actively grinding. And it also, one of the benefits is it opens the jaw just enough so that it actually relaxes some of these muscles. It actually reduces a lot of the inflammation and even the pain that they’re suffering from.
The enamel is one of the hardest surfaces in the body. I have seen people who are my age, and literally have no teeth remaining, no structure remaining, because they have literally grounded away. It causes a great problem because now we no longer have teeth to work with. When we provide that patient or that person with a guard, we are literally protecting them, and as they wear that guard, we hope that they can keep their teeth, and all of that beautiful structure throughout their life.