Why Do Dental Night Guards Vary so Much in Cost?
Store bought “ready to wear” dental night guards cost as little as $20.00. Some dentists are charging upwards of $800. Online, you can purchase a custom made night guard by taking your own dental impression for as little as $99.00. What gives?
Sometimes your dentist can justify the price of what dental night guards cost.
For example, dentists could be making a complex guard for you to treat misalignment of the jaw or sleep apnea.
If your dentist is making you a traditional custom night guard with no bells and whistles, a better option financially, might be to buy a custom night guard online.
Teeth grinding or bruxism is not only painful, but can also be harmful to ones’ dental health. It can result in the fracturing of teeth and eventually tooth loss. In some chronic cases, it could even lead to jaw disorders, such as temporomandibular joint disorder and change the appearance of the face. The worst part is that it usually happens when the person is asleep and unaware.
So why does a night guard cost so much?
If you find yourself in the market for a dental night guard and you’re unsure of which route to take, there is comfort (not to mention savings) in knowing your options.
The good news is, dental night guards were created to counter the effects of bruxism. They do work. Wearing a dental night guard offers excellent protection for the teeth and can alleviate teeth pain, jaw pain, headaches and more!
The night guard is a removable appliance worn during sleep to protect teeth and the jaw from the damage caused by clenching by reducing its hazardous effects.
The question is –why the wide difference in night guard cost? And which is better? The ones made by dentists or the direct night guard labs online? To help individuals in their decision making, let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of each one.
Dentist-Made Night Guard
Pros of going through your dentist:
1. The primary advantage of choosing to go to your local dentist for your night guard is convenience.
He or she will do all the work for you. During the initial visit, the dentist will take impressions of your teeth and fill out the necessary paper work as your teeth impression is sent to a professional dental laboratory for fabrication.
A return visit is required to fit the fabricated night guard once it has been shipped to your dentist.
2. Fitting adjustments.
If your night guard needs some minor adjustments, it’s more convenient to visit your dentist and have them make them to any areas of concern.
3. Ability to make a more customized type.
Custom dental night guards can become more involved if a person is being treated for TMJ or alignment issues.
If a dentist recommends you wear a night guard with special metal clasps, or ramps, etc., because of TMJ, alignment or other issues; you will not want to go through an online night guard lab. You will need to rely on and trust the expertise of your dentist.
And the not-so-good side of going through a dentist…
The downside is that it could cost you anywhere from $300 up to $1200+.
Many times the dental night guard cost is not covered by your insurance. On the brighter side of things, given that the night guard you purchase from your dentist is made from a mold of your teeth impression, it usually has a snug and comfortable fit compared to over the counter options.
2. No guarantee.
Many dentists (not all – there are some great ones out there) do not offer any sort of money back guarantee. Check with your dentist to see if he/she will refund you if you’re not satisfied.
Most online night guard labs offer full refunds if you’re dissatisfied for any reason.
Custom Dental Night Guards Purchased Online
1. Exactly the same night guard as the one you buy from a dentist (unless your dentist is fashioning a more complicated type to treat sleep apnea, TMJ, misalignment, etc).
Today, consumers have an option of buying custom made night guards online.
Dental guards purchased online have the same quality as the ones you get from a dentist. This is not only because it is custom made, but because the same dental labs where your dentist gets your night guards are the same guys and gals that fabricate the night guards you get directly online.
That was wordy. What we meant to say is: It’s the exact same thing!
The best part is that you could save around $300 to $800 by skipping your dentist’s high fees. Dental night guards online will cost you from $100-$200. Getting the same quality for a lower price is indeed a great benefit. Plus, Sentinel Mouthguards offers free all-inclusive shipping on any product.
3. Money back guarantee and/or satisfaction guarantee.
Finding the right night guard can sometimes feel a lot like the Goldilocks’ dilemma. Too thick. Too thin. Too soft. Too hard. Personal preference varies and what works great for one may not work for another. Again, a reputable night guard lab will work with you to find your perfect night guard match, even after you’ve received your product. This is what 100% satisfaction means!
A few “cons” of going the online route:
1. You are responsible for the outcome of your own dental impression.
Making your own teeth impression from the home kit provided is easy, but requires your focus. You must read the instructions and watch the tutorial video before attempting your dental impression.
Note that reputable dental night guard labs should have no problem sending you a new dental impression kit for free if you don’t get your impression right at first.
2. Any adjustments to your night guard device that may be needed are easier to perform in a dental office when the patient is present and can work with the dentist to reach satisfaction of fit.
However, you can still get adjustments made through an online night guard lab. You should be aware the this will take more time because of the mailing correspondence involved. Also, most reputable online dental night guard sellers will offer money back guarantees to ensure customer satisfaction.
How much does a night guard cost from the dentist?
Dental office night guard cost
Professionally Made Night Guard From Dentists
These are custom dental night guards ordered directly from your dentist.
Usually, the dentist takes a mold of your teeth then sends it to a lab, where your own customized dental night guard is created.
These night guards are very effective at preventing teeth grinding at night as they are custom fitted for your teeth specifically.
They vary in thickness depending on the severity of teeth grinding.
In addition to preventing teeth grinding, custom night guards curb jaw strain and enhance better jaw muscle positioning, preventing long-term teeth grinding and clenching. They are comfortable to wear and can last for a very long time if well taken care of.
However, this is the most expensive option out there, with the price falling in the range of $300 to $1200 depending on the dentist. The dental office price can vary greatly, depending on which state you live in and the particular area within that state (ex: in NYC the price for a night guard averages over $1k.)
So,how much is a mouth guard from the dentist?
This answer depends on where you are located in the world. Generally speaking, a dental night guard from your dentist will cost between $400-$900.
What kind of dental night guards should I buy?
First, what to avoid:
The Sports Mouth Guard
Sports mouth guards are very common; this is because it is mandatory for young children to have them on while playing most sports. They are made of stiff plastic, making them uncomfortable to wear for long hours. Some can be boiled then molded to your teeth, but they tend to be bulky. They are a great option for protecting teeth from impact during sport activities.
Do not wear a sports mouth guard as a dental night guard substitut
They are not as effective as dental night guards because their structure and material causes sleeping and breathing difficulties. In fact, they can worsen bruxism and may cause jaw problems because of their bulky nature and bad fit.
Alternative Night Guard Choices
Over the Counter Dental Night Guard
You do have the option of purchasing a night guard from some convenience stores such as CVS or Walmart. These are made of plastic and most come with some sort of fitting instructions such as boiling the plastic appliance in hot water and then molding to your teeth.
These types are affordable as their price falls in the range of $15 -$30 and can are often labeled as “custom” dental night guards. However, there are looming problems with mass produced “one size fits all” night guards.
Some are made of thick plastic and one may find them rather uncomfortable to wear. Many people complain that the excess material towards the back and up the sides makes it difficult to wear. Others are thin but do not stay in place. Also the plastic material is cheaper. This is not dental grade material designed for enduring the act of teeth grinding and clenching. The cheaper material tends to wear down much quicker.
Professional Night Guard from Online Stores
These are custom dental night guards ordered from online stores. Sentinel Mouthguards is a direct business to consumer specialized laboratory that will send you supplies and instructions to help you take a mold of your teeth.
We then use your mold to create a customized dental night guard. The produced appliances are the same high quality dental night guard as you would get from your own dentist, serving the same service of comfort and protection.
This is a less expensive, yet very reliable alternative to purchasing from your dentist, as the level of quality is the same.
Price falls in the range of $90 to $140, making this a very effective and cheap option to go for.
Basically, dentists are more expensive as you pay them for taking the mold of your teeth; this is the only difference between the two, unless your dentist is making a more complex appliance (such as one for TMJ that sets the jaw into desired position).
Check out our frequently asked questions page for more information on how it works, the Sentinel guarantee (something a dentist very rarely offers) and more!
How much do professional night guards cost from online stores?
With the many options out there, you may be split for choice.
The option of buying “one size fits all” type of mouth guards, may seem as a convenient temporary fix to prevent teeth grinding; however, this may not give you service for a long time.
You can comfortably enjoy the services of a professional dental lab at a fraction of the price by buying from an online store.
This is a convenient option because the mouth guard is custom made to suit your mouth, it saves you money, and it is hassle-free.
There are many online stores out there dealing with selling of mouth guards, ensure you go to a credited source to avoid the risks associated with fraudsters.
In today’s world, most people underestimate the importance of dental care. They fail to understand that oral issues can lead to wide range of disorders affecting different regions of the body. As a result, it is quite essential that you understand what your oral health requirements are.
The cost of a high quality, custom dental night guard might seem too much for some, but in reality, it is a worthy investment.
Healthy strong teeth are vital, not just for proper dental health, but also for comfort and well-being.
If diagnosed with bruxism, don’t worry. Take the preventive measures recommended to ensure the problem does not evolve any further.
Most dentists often suggest expensive custom mouth guards, but by going to an online store, you can save a lot of money while enjoying the same level of comfort and protection.
Why spend $500+? You can save more than half the price by going for online options and having your mouth guards made at the same quality.
Whether you choose night guards made by your dentists or purchase custom made online night guards, we hope that you sleep better knowing that your teeth grinding won’t cause damage to your dental health, and that you purchased the best night guard available today (custom made) to suit your needs.