Nightguards are used to protect natural tooth and restoration surfaces, manage mandibular (jaw) dysfunction (TMD), and stabilize the jaw joints during occlusion, or create space prior to restoration procedures. People prone to nocturnal bruxism (grinding) or nighttime clenching should routinely wear occlusal splints at night.
Occlusal splints are typically made of a heat-cured acrylic resin. They generally cover all the teeth of the upper or lower arch, although partial coverage is also sometimes used. They not only protect the teeth from grinding and clenching, but also relaxes the jaw muscles by placing the lower mandible in the most relaxed position.