They say the economy is starting to turn around, but all of us are still concerned with how our lives are being affected. This and other stresses do not turn themselves off when we are sleeping. Over the past year, we have seen an increase in the number of patients with cracked teeth or fractured fillings. Many times, the patient has not been aware of biting into something overly hard but now he or she has a problem that needs fixed with a filling or crown. I often see stress fractures and wear facets on other teeth as well, but there is hope that we will not have to do fillings or crowns on all of these areas. Just as we try to prevent tooth decay with fluoride and good oral hygiene, we try to lessen the stress that we unknowingly put on our teeth overnight by recommending wearing a mouthguard at night.

There are a variety of different types of nightguards that exist, from over-the-counter “boil and bite” to custom made laboratory fabricated nightguards. With over-the-counter nightguards you have to be careful as they can do damage to your teeth by changing the way the teeth come together.

The most common types of professionally fabricated nightguards that I recommend for my patients are the full coverage hard co-polyester with soft polyurethane inner layer or the NTI. The full coverage mouthguard can be warmed under hot water prior to placement to make wearing it more comfortable. The NTI style bite splint covers just the anterior (front) teeth making it easier to tolerate for those who have the tendency to gag.

The benefits of nightguards don’t stop with preserving your teeth. Many people who clench and grind at night also suffer from frequent TMJ discomfort and headaches. Your nightgaurd may also help to alleviate these symptoms.

Give us a call (440-282-2023) today to reserve an appointment with Dr. Pruneski so we may discuss your nightguard options.

Whispering Pines Dental is located at 690 Cooper Foster Park Road in Lorain. Contact us at 440-282-2023 or Check out our new website at and like us on Facebook at

Dr. Julie Pruneski is a member of the American Dental Association, the Ohio Dental Association, the Lorain County Dental Society, and the American Academy of Facial Esthetics. Dr. Prunesi is a graduate of John Carroll University with a Doctorate of Dental Surgery from The Ohio State University. Dr. Pruneski worked as a teaching intern at The Ohio State University Medical Center’s Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery department.

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