As a dental patient, you may find yourself having to wear bite blocks to help correct issues with your bite. These mouthpieces are used to keep your jaw in place so that it can heal or adjust as needed.
While wearing bite blocks can sometimes be uncomfortable and awkward, there are ways that you can still enjoy eating without harming your mouth or the appliance.
In this article, we will provide expert advice on how to eat with bite blocks and ensure optimal dental health during the healing process.
What Are Bite Blocks?
Bite blocks refer to small devices attached either inside or outside of your teeth that prevent them from coming together while you are eating or sleeping. They typically consist of plastic or clear acrylic dental resin molded into the shape of your teeth.
These devices should not be confused with other types of orthodontic appliances such as braces, retainers, aligners, etc., which usually serve different purposes but could also have their unique dietary requirements for patients who use them.
Why Do You Need Bite Blocks?
If you experience any malocclusion (misalignment) in your mouth caused by under-bites, overbites and crossbites after a visit with an orthodontist they may recommend using these little devices. It is essential because if left untreated these irregular bites could cause teeth grinding (bruxism), uneven distribution across the chewing surface area leading ultimately to stress on the joints holding both jaws together causing TMD disorder.(Temporomandibular joint disorder).
Many dentists prefer simple approaches managing TMJ conditions in patients; therefore resorts often end up being surgical procedures under general anesthesia such as arthrocentesis,corticosteroid injections,microsurgical rhytidectomy respectively,
Another situation where doctors would prescribe is when undergoing Invisalign therapy,you may need some extra aid like ‘chewies’ ie malleable silicone tube placed between molars encouraging movement.In closing large gaps,since aligners may require some pressure often, teeth movement techniques such as Rubber bands or elastics and bite blocks are combined.
Types of Bite Blocks
There are four types of bite blocks that dentists use:
1. Open-bite appliance: it’s used to alleviate problems with excessive overbite by keeping back molars apart and allow front teeth to come together on a resting position.
2. Posterior crossbite appliance: this is used to prevent jaw from slipping into an unnatural location when you chew. Another variant could be single tooth-size appliances also known as tongue crib in helping break thumb sucking habits among younger patients.
3. Habitual Appliance/Thumb-sucking device:this type of block helps prevent the habit of thumb sucking which may impact oral cavity development ultimately leading to misshapen jaws aesthetically unpleasing smiles in adulthood.
4.Appliances for orthopedic treatment- They can facilitate Jaw growth correction addressing underdeveloped upper and lower jawbone caused conditions producing malocclusion,.such as small chins,narrow arches et cetera enhancing facial profile appearance with successful long term outcomes compared to adults undergone surgery.
How To Eat With Bite Blocks?
While wearing your bite block(s), avoid hard foods like nuts, granola bars, popcorns, carrots cut crudely or stringy meats that require substantial mastication effort., You wouldn’t want these sharp textures causing excess wear tear on its surfaces risking further dental damage
Stick Smoothies/Shakes:Purées Soups Are Best Bet
Pureeing any dish in the absence of the mechanical ability provided by your molars is a terrific option for maintaining optimal nutrition while economizing chewing exposure on induced temporary trauma.Liquid diets ,which not only minimizes digestion time enabling faster bowel movements but keeps dental cavities at bay also proves effective.in nutrients assimilation absorption + Offering enough hydration water content essential bodily functions optimization,.
Another great method would be to add wholesome protein,or fruit yoghurt nut butter blend like the ones made from cashews or almonds if you have dietary restrictions.
And take smaller bites chewing slowly,Allowing your teeth to rest for longer periods so that it can’t break fragments off which could carry bacteria causing foul odors.is important. Make sure each bite is only as big as what can comfortably go over the tongue without making a mess in the mouth area. Going slow also prevents clenching or grinding when digesting food hence avoiding any further health complications..
Lastly, avoid excessively hot drinks and foods since they could soften materials before time reduces longevity with damages compromising dental restoration units leading ultimately to replacements costs undoing gains in savings.
While eating with bite blocks may at first seem challenging and uncomfortable, propriety modifications towards essential nourishments will help facilitate faster healing ensure efficient orthodontic corrective actions reducing future complications.. Be mindful of adherent temporary diets prescribed by healthcare providers for swift healing lasting effects..Foods rich in vitamins B,C,D,E including minerals such as calcium fiber ensures effective chewable and optimal post-surgical outcomes .Most importantly; always brush twice daily on top of using an approved mouthwash solution rinse weekly religiously preventing unappealing scents lingering around Talk to your dentist about how best you can maintain excellent oral hygiene while wearing bite blocks temporarily ,and continue routine check-ups when necessary supporting long term good practices coupled with healthy eats-lifestyle changes.