T Nation

Mouth Guard For Lifting

During a trip to my dentist today he informed me that I’m destroying one of my lower teeth by grinding it (whilst probably lifting).

His solution was a 750euro (that’s $996) custom made injection molded plastic mouth guard. He’s notorius for being overpriced but he’s VERY good at what he does. Obviously I’ve no intention of spending that much on a mouth guard so I’m looking at some possible alternatives.

My first port of call is http://www.shockdoc.com/mouthguards.html but I don’t know how suitable they’d be.

Basically I’m only about to start researching them so hopefully someone with a similar experience might be able to chime in and offer some suggestions.

Gel/soft rubber isn’t really an option, it needs to be very solid and take a hell of a biting.

Thanks…,

[quote]Hanley wrote:
During a trip to my dentist today he informed me that I’m destroying one of my lower teeth by grinding it (whilst probably lifting).

His solution was a 750euro (that’s $996) custom made injection molded plastic mouth guard. He’s notorius for being overpriced but he’s VERY good at what he does. Obviously I’ve no intention of spending that much on a mouth guard so I’m looking at some possible alternatives.

My first port of call is http://www.shockdoc.com/mouthguards.html but I don’t know how suitable they’d be.

Basically I’m only about to start researching them so hopefully someone with a similar experience might be able to chime in and offer some suggestions.

Gel/soft rubber isn’t really an option, it needs to be very solid and take a hell of a biting.

Thanks…,[/quote]

if its just to prevent you from biting it, the gel max will probably be fine, as it has a hard plastic coating. If you are interested in getting a custom mouthguard, check out http://www.customguards.com/product_ge.shtml
or http://www.protechmouthguards.com/guards.htm
You can get the best model for 1/10th the price you would be paying.

Hanley, while I’m no expert in the arena of mouthguards, having practiced Muay Thai and American football, I have had to use them.

Also, I’ve seen the mouthguard my wife’s dentist prescribed her before we met (which didn’t cost $1000, but was way more expensive than the ones I’d bought).

In view of this, I am very sceptical of prescribed mouthguards because I couldn’t see much of a difference between my wife’s and mine…except for the price tag.

I would tell you to buy a good commercial one, which at worst, will do 99.9% of the work the prescription one will do.

Those are my cynical 2c (about 1.3c of a euro).

Not sure if this will help or not, but you can customize any plastic mouthguard simply by dipping it in boiling water for a few seconds, then putting it in your mouth, biting down, then sucking the moisture and air out. It will mold to your teeth as it cools.

I’m obviously no dentist, but I almost guarantee you are grinding whilst you sleep not during the day or while lifting. Anyways, I would recommend getting the cheap type at a sports store that you soak in hot water, bite down, for 5 min, then put in cold water. Then you can cut it down to make it smaller and easier to sleep with. Good luck.

[quote]dead_lifter5000 wrote:
I’m obviously no dentist, but I almost guarantee you are grinding whilst you sleep not during the day or while lifting. Anyways, I would recommend getting the cheap type at a sports store that you soak in hot water, bite down, for 5 min, then put in cold water. Then you can cut it down to make it smaller and easier to sleep with. Good luck.[/quote]

I have agree with this post. 1000$ is insane, you could probably replace the damn tooth for that much.

my dentist told me the same thing. I went to sport’s authority and bought a cheap one- this was two years ago. It has worked fine and seams to help my lifts as well. If this makes sense- it makes everything feel “tighter” when I bit down on it.

go cheap…

meat

I bite down when training and so I bought a cheepy and cut it down and also molded it to my bottom teeth for more comfort and it works great. Walmart 97cents

As someone that grinds his teeth at night, I can tell you that the plastic/gel guards will work. I got one of those high priced ones from my dentist and broke it a few months later. I actually cracked it while grinding my teeth while I slept.

I also ground through a softer one that he gave me.

I then went to the regular sports guards and found those to work great. They protect my teeth, it is easy to tell when I need a new one and I can do it all for about $1 plus the time to boil the water.

Well, I am a dentist. Yes, custom made night guards are recommended for those who grind their teeth at night (which is when I would expect most of the damage is being done), not just when you are lifting. The severity of the damage will determine what you can get away with as far as store bought devices. $1,000 sounds excessive…very excessive unless you have worn most of the enamel off of your teeth and this is part of long term treatment.

Most people who grind their teeth aren’t just doing it when lifting. in many weight lifters (including myself), the masseter muscles are more developed and can generate much more force than that seen in a sedentary person. that would lead to more wear at night.

Bottom line, custom devices are recommended in severe cases. No one, not even me, could tell you how severe your case is without looking into your mouth and seeing the damage. that means taking the word of people unrelated to your specific situation about what you should do is a little off. If you are doing significant damage, it will only get worse over time.

As far as the difference between a custom made device and a store bought, I have been trained in this area specifically by the military. The goal is to find a comfortable position when the device is in place in order to help reduce the activity of those muscles, not simply protect the teeth. Using “bite registrations” and setting the head of the condyle of the mandible back into the fossa can help that goal. I often give my patients the soft devices to wear DURING THE DAY in order to help teach new habits if their symptoms imply daily grinding instead of at night.

Considering I do these all day at no cost to military men and women, I find $1,000 bucks for one extreme.

Get a second opinion and ask if a “boil and bite” registration is a possibility.

Prof X - Didn’t know you were a dentist. You familiar with Fort Hood? Ahhh the good old days…

Wow… very comprehensive post X. Thanks.

He said that my enamel was pretty much all gone, and that I was almost at the Dente (sp?) layer if that’s of any relevance?

The wear is isolated to one tooth, the left central incisor on my lower teeth. That’s why I don’t think I grind my teeth at night, surely the damage would be across the board if I did?

He charges 140euro (about $200) for a custom fitted mouth guard, and even by Irish prices that’s insane. It’s about 75% over what most other dentists are charging according to what I’ve been told.

[quote]Hanley wrote:
Wow… very comprehensive post X. Thanks.

He said that my enamel was pretty much all gone, and that I was almost at the Dente (sp?) layer if that’s of any relevance?[/quote]

Dentin.

[quote]

The wear is isolated to one tooth, the left central incisor on my lower teeth. That’s why I don’t think I grind my teeth at night, surely the damage would be across the board if I did?[/quote]

Mostly your canines and molars. Extreme grinders can even begin wearing down their anterior…front teeth. That doesn’t mean you don’t have wear there. It simply means you may need clarification on what the problem is. Many patients leave the doctor’s office without a full understanding of the problem. That is why I use charts and models…and repeat myself often…and repeat myself often.

[quote]
He charges 140euro (about $200) for a custom fitted mouth guard, and even by Irish prices that’s insane. It’s about 75% over what most other dentists are charging according to what I’ve been told.[/quote]

That is about what many dentists in the US charge especially in severe cases and is a far cry from the number you wrote earlier.

[quote]Professor X wrote:
Hanley wrote:
Wow… very comprehensive post X. Thanks.

He said that my enamel was pretty much all gone, and that I was almost at the Dente (sp?) layer if that’s of any relevance?

Dentin.
[/quote]

I see…

I should clarify, he said there was NO wear on any of the other teeth, just that one. It seems like an odd place to grind in my un-educated opinion.

[quote]

He charges 140euro (about $200) for a custom fitted mouth guard, and even by Irish prices that’s insane. It’s about 75% over what most other dentists are charging according to what I’ve been told.

That is about what many dentists in the US charge especially in severe cases and is a far cry from the number you wrote earlier.[/quote]

The mouth guard is the sort of one you wear for contact sports, he said it would be too soft to prevent my teeth from getting mashed while lifting.

The one he showed me (the $1000 one) was a thin hard plastic that that sits on the top teeth and goes back over the roof of the mouth. They use it for treating people with chronic night headaches and ginrders he said.

I have one of the low profile night guards that you mentioned in the last post. It’s high density plastic that clips to the top molars and covers the hard palette. I paid $120 Canadian to have a custom fit. Best investment I think I have ever made, but I could grind diamonds in my sleep.

I bought the gel max blue ones two weeks ago. They are fine, pretty good actually.

I have the same problem, not so much grinding, but clenching. I do it all day, lifting, working, sleeping, etc. My dentist gave me a high end guard, and I opted for the wal-mart brand. I have since had to go to a TMJ specialist, and the mouth guard he gave me was $2500 becuase it not only had to keep me from grinding/clenching, but to re-align my jaw.

To para-phrase Prof X, it all depends on your situation, and you need the right tool for the job. If you half-ass it now, you may be sorry about it later.

[quote]Hanley wrote:

I should clarify, he said there was NO wear on any of the other teeth, just that one. It seems like an odd place to grind in my un-educated opinion.[/quote]

Then color me skeptical and the “second opinion” recommendation is now bright as day.

The hard night guards are for people who do a lot of damage to their teeth at night or in sports activities. The soft ones would be easy to chew through if you are that bad at grinding your teeth. I have NEVER heard of a $1,000 simple hard night guard. It makes me glad I chose this profession…but I am amazed that price tag exists for a product that my lab techs can make in less than an hour.

Bottom line, I can’t give you specifics on your condition because you aren’t my patient and I haven’t seen your mouth. It would be very odd for someone to recommend that type of night guard because of the damage to one tooth, especially an incisor. That is why I still hold that you may be missing some info. I would recommend you ask more questions in detail and then get a second opinion.

Like I wrote before, your front teeth would usually be damaged AFTER your posterior teeth have been ground down. That would imply that the damage you are aware of is not all there is.

[quote]shapdog wrote:
I have the same problem, not so much grinding, but clenching. I do it all day, lifting, working, sleeping, etc. My dentist gave me a high end guard, and I opted for the wal-mart brand. I have since had to go to a TMJ specialist, and the mouth guard he gave me was $2500 becuase it not only had to keep me from grinding/clenching, but to re-align my jaw.

To para-phrase Prof X, it all depends on your situation, and you need the right tool for the job. If you half-ass it now, you may be sorry about it later.[/quote]

That is why I think he is missing some info. If his condition is very severe, that would explain the cost and it is NOT just a simple hard night guard but treatment for possible misalignment.

The title of this thread threw me off before I saw it. I thought you were doing lip presses with a barbell or something.