NTI night guard

NTI night guard review

Review: The NTI night guard by your licensed dentist.
Official website: chairsidesplint.com

In 1998, James P. Boyd developed a splint to treat and prevent headaches and bruxism. He named it the “nociceptive trigeminal inhibition splint” (NTI). The NTI night guard has the distinction of covering only the front teeth. According to Dr. Boyd, pressure on the front teeth should reduce the intensity of the involuntary contractions that people with bruxism suffer from. In other words, with the NTI night guard, you should not be able to clench as hard as you normally do.

It is important to know, for anyone thinking about getting a NTI mouth guard that its benefits have only been evaluated over short periods of time. Some reports have been made of alteration in the position of the teeth in bruxers who wore this device for a long period.

To use a NTI night guard, you need to have it adjusted by a dentist who had previous training with the NTI. To find a dentist, use one of the links below:

In canada: http://www.nti-tss.ca/pages/finddds.htm

In the US: http://www.theheadacheremedy.com/fad.php

NTI night guard preview

In our opinion, it is not advisable to use the NTI night guard. It does not completely protect the teeth. As stated in the requirements for a good mouth guard, a night guard should cover all teeth, not just the front teeth.

If you do decide to go for the NTI, make sure to have frequent follow-ups with your dentist. Your dentist should tell you if there is any alteration in your teeth. Price for the NTI device range from $250 to $600. It is the important follow-ups that explain the high price of this night guard.

Keep in mine that for a lower price, you can easily get a custom made night guard that protect all your teeth. For this reason and those specified above, we strongly recommend you use a custom night guard instead of the NTI guard. Learn more at Step 1.

Have you tried the NTI night guard? Post your review below.

NTI night guard SKU UPC Model

Beware of NTI

Sep 04, 2014 by lauren Jarvis

This appliance ended up moving my front tooth out, dramatically affecting my bite and allignment and causing both my daughter and
I to have to spend $4,000 to have "Invisiline " repositioning procedure
done on both of our mouths.
Terrible invention!! This was only after 5 months!


IT'S THE WORST

Aug 21, 2014 by Carly

Never ever use the NTI, no matter how appealing or convincing your dentist makes it sound.

I used the NTI for 6 years after headaches/jaw pain related to teeth grinding. After noticing a gradual open bite over the years, I consulted a new dentist and they said the open bite was certainly caused by the NTI and I would need orthodontic treatment to fix this bite.

Long story short: NTI did very little for my TMJ symptoms, caused an open bite and now I need to spend $5,000 on braces when I didnt need them as a child.


The NTI Works for Me

Jul 29, 2014 by George C.

I have worn the NTI guard for over 15 years and have never had a problem. My grinding/clenching was eliminated immediately and the resulting headaches and jaw/teeth pain have been gone for 15 plus years. My dentist periodically checks the fit during a routine visit and there has never been a problem.


Caused serious gum recession over front teeth

Jul 09, 2014 by Sasha

Caused more trouble than it helped. Recession that I did not have in the gums over my front teeth gradually started after wearing this. I also got my first ever cavity at age 36 on one of the covered front teeth while using it. Figured out in my sleep how to shift my jaw so I could make my molars touch again and ended up in worse pain than without a night guard. Stupid little "tooth".


Love my NTI

Jun 26, 2014 by Cameron

I've been wearing my NTI for 12 yrs. I clench my teeth at night and wake up with a headache, sore teeth & jaw. The NTI stopped that. When I don't wear it, I definitely know it! I paid $600 for mine & when I lost it, I bought another one for $600. That's how much I need this thing! I recently changed dentists & she freaked that I had been wearing an NTI. She was sure my teeth had supraerupted. They have not. They look great & are healthy. Her conclusion was that it works for me & to keep wearing it.


Inaccurate information provided here

Apr 24, 2014 by James P. Boyd, DDS

I stumbled across this site, and as it referenced me directly, so I thought I should provide some insight.
The NTI was not developed for ”bruxism”, but rather, for high intensity clenching that the common nightguards, even the one promoted and sold on this site, have no effect on. The NTI’s primary indication cleared by the FDA is for the prevention of medically diagnosed migraine pain. I wore a full splint for years, yet my headaches, migraines and joint pain persisted. The neurophysiology of the jaw clenching muscles dictates that pathologically intense contractions CANNOT occur *unless* the molars or canines touch each other, or if something is sandwiched in between (like the typical splint). ”Pressure on the front teeth”, as the author of this site claims I say, is *not* what limits muscle contraction intensity, rather, it’s the ABSENCE of molar contact. Done properly, there is no ”pressure” felt on the patient’s front teeth. If there is, the device is improperly provided.
Over 3/4 million NTI devices have been professionally delivered. In a recent study of over 74,000 cases, 1.6% reported undesired jaw repositioning. That’s no more that what occurs with traditional nightguards, but since those are completely custom provided by private practitioners, there’s no ”brand name” device to complain about. The hundreds of thousands of comfortable and satisfied NTI patients aren’t flooding the internet with glowing testimonials, but the hundreds who have not have success continue to search for relief, and tend to be vocal about their NTI experience.
If all one requires is protection of their teeth from grinding, and is without symptoms, then any full-coverage device, even the one sold on this site, is fine. However, when there are symptoms involved, it’s irresponsible to suggest that a device of the NTI’s design is contraindicated.
*****
Comment from webmaster Marc:

Thank you Doctor for this additional information. While I do realize you may have a competing interest, I would be happy to look at the recent study you mentioned. Can you provide a link to this study?


Wore for 6 months

Apr 09, 2014 by Mel

I got this due to my grinding and clenching. This was suggested because of my clenching and how quickly I would probably bite through a full mouth piece.
After 6 months I was told to stop wearing it as I was having more jaw pain than I was initially.
I now have an open bite, more jaw pain, and just had to have an occlusal analysis to try to figure out how to fix everything now.


don't use it!

Mar 12, 2014 by Marla

Don't use this device! I now have an open bite because of the NTI. It did not prevent me from clenching, just caused my front teeth to be pushed apart ... and I clench now more than ever!


disappointed

Jan 08, 2014 by Andrea

I wore a nti for 6 years. I noticed my face changed as well as my bite. I now have an open bite and overjet. I have been looking into how to correct the damage this has caused. If anyone has had this corrected before, can you please give me some feedback on the treatment you received? So far I am only hearing I need to extract teeth to make room to correct with braces. Thank you


Beware of long-term use (i.e., more than a week)

Dec 07, 2013 by Molly

I wore an NTI for about 10 years. At first, it seemed like a good thing. My back teeth couldn't touch, so I wasn't clenching as badly and my teeth were protected from one another. However, eventually my back teeth could touch. My dentist then made a larger NTI to prevent them from touching. This was repeated multiple times until I had both NTIs on both the top and bottom front teeth. Finally, my dentist looked at the latest set of impressions and was amazed that I could function: my bite was 10 mm open! (i.e., my front teeth were 1 cm apart when my back teeth touched) The change was gradual, so I don't know when I could no longer bite through anything with my front teeth. I have gone without a night guard for 6 months now, and my bite is "only" 5 or 6 mm open. I am now trying to figure out if this can be fixed with braces alone, or if jaw surgery + braces will be required. If your teeth can't touch, they start trying to find each other, so my teeth are totally out of alignment. Please do your research before wearing a device like this!


2.9 5.0 15 15 This appliance ended up moving my front tooth out, dramatically affecting my bite and allignment and causing both my daughter andI to have to spend $4,000 to have "Invisiline " r NTI night guard
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15 Comments
  1. Hi,

    I clench my jaw in my sleep. I have had an NTI in the past. I found that it made my front teeth very sore and eventually gave up using it. I have also had several night guards custom made by my dentist.
    As my teeth are cracking and three have been removed and eventually replaced by implants, the night guards had had to be remade, which is proving costly.
    The last one was eaten by my dog!
    I suffer daily migraine headaches.
    I have tried hypnosis, acupuncture, massage, several types of meditation, stress reduction, botox, sleeping tablets, Lyrica and valium, all with no success.
    I am now considering investing in a biofeedback device called the SleepGuard Biofeedback Headband. I would be interested if any of your readers have had success with it.

    • Hi Sabina,
      One thing I would check before trying the SleepGuard Biofeedback is if your clenching is caused by apnea or upper airway resistance during your sleep. Those sleep disorders cause micro arousals (which you are usually unaware of) that can cause clenching of your jaw. If you don’t suffer from those disorders, than the SleepGuard will most likely help you.

      And for your next custom night guards, you can save a lot buy ordering directly from Pro Teeth Guard if you live in the US or Canada.

  2. Hi, thanks for this site and article. so helpful. :)

    I’ve had an NTI (fitted for my bottom teeth) since april 20, 2011. the other night (mid-June, 2013), it broke. I destroyed it over time with my clenching. It split in half. I paid $425 for it.

    I was furious.

    My last night guard lasted YEARS. It was a typical custom guard that encapsulated all of my upper teeth that over a period of years, but eventually it started coming apart in little pieces.

    My new dentist (I’d moved) recommended the NTI, which I’d never seen before.

    For $425 the thing should last a decade. I have an appointment today and am very upset at the prospect of shelling out hundreds more dollars for a new guard. I WILL NOT choose the NTI again. It fell out of my mouth a few times in the night over the years too. Or I’d wake in the middle of the night with it rolling around in my mouth. Scary.

    In addition, because of the pressure I put on the NTI nightly for a year or so, my upper teeth pushed out and would no longer touch my bottom teeth when I bit down. Instead of complaining to my dentist, who actually looked alarmed when I told him this, I took advantage of the situation and had him add a bit of bonding to lengthen my front tooth which was dead and worn smaller than its neighbor from years of grinding. I hated the way my teeth looked—uneven and worn in a slope—and I’d been advised not to have my smaller tooth lengthened because I’d have broken it in my sleep with the grinding. The NTI was good for this, though I doubt it was an intended benefit when it was created. ;)

    I’ve been sleeping for two days without a guard at all. My old chipped one no longer fits me because of my altered bite due to the NTI, but it would be fine and even in its chipped condition has outlasted the NTI by years. I’ve been making a conscious effort to keep my mouth slightly open and protruding my tongue a bit over my bottom teeth. it’s not pretty but I have NOT been waking up with that horrible tight/vibrating jaw feeling that tells me I was clenching and grinding in my sleep.

    I’ve been grinding/clenching for decades. I have fissures in all of my teeth. My teeth are small and square and I’ve killed my front right tooth. I have had four guards over this time. The best one I had was a typical one that unfortunately got lost in my luggage in 2006. The next one (the chipped one I stil have now) just isn’t as good. so much depends on the dentist’s artistry and skill.

    The NTI in the end is just not worth it. I’m glad it allowed me to get my dead tooth re-bonded and cosmetically enhance my smile, but I doubt the dentist who invented it intended for it to move anyone’s teeth. And seriously, $425 for something that unintentionally alters your bite, falls out of your mouth in the middle of the night and splits in two within two years? Are you kidding me? Totally unacceptable.

    Thanks again for this site.

    • Welcome to the real world. You destroyed the hell out of your NTI but somehow its your dentist’s fault. Take responsibility for the seriousness of your condition. Its your body doing it not someone else. Your teeth DID NOT shift this is the relationship that your muscles want your jaws in! It is a result of the muscle fibers relaxing to their natural state from using the NTI.

    • Thanks for sharing about your experience with the NTI I bought one yesterday unfortunately before reading this and I woke up in pain with a headache, which I normally don’t get. Also my top teeth felt very weird pain like they we’re bring pushed :( wish I had read this sooner.

  3. I just began wearing my first NTI night guard about 3 weeks ago, after I suddenly began to suffer from headaches and jaw/neck/shoulder pains and suspected the pains were from grinding and clenching my teeth in the night. The pains went away almost immediately when I began wearing the NTI. However, now after wearing it for 3 weeks, I have developed a strange new issue with my mouth. It feels like there are small cuts on the inside of my lower lip, which I think may be from the two somewhat sharp ridges that run along the bottom sides of the NTI. I’m wondering if my dentist can “shave” them to make them less sharp. Also, I now get a strange burning sensation on my tongue when I smoke a cigarette, which has never happened before. So it seems logical to conclude that this is from the NTI. My dentist told me to only use regular hand soap to clean the NTI, but I later asked what I can use to disinfect it, and she said that occasionally soaking it in a bit of antiseptic mouthwash is okay. After doing some research online, I’ve found out that mouth guards can also sometimes cause fungus problems in the mouth, but my dentist said she sees no signs of fungus. So I’m really trying to figure out what exactly is causing these new mouth pains of mine (the burning tongue and feeling of small cuts inside my lips). I didn’t wear the NTI one night but noticed no difference the next day. Who knows. But I am thankful it’s helped the other pains related to the bruxism. Ah, my dentist also said that the NTI usually only should be worn for 6 months though they can sometimes last a year. Also, it should be worn at least 5 nights every week because our teeth are constantly moving very slightly and if you don’t wear it for a while, it might not fit when you do go to wear it again.

  4. Don’t shell out hundreds of dollars for a night guard!! The NTI’s work for some people but they are not for everyone and as they are still relatively new on the scene I would strongly urge you to go with a classic custom fit night guard, true custom fit night guards based on a dental impression of your teeth for way less than what the dental office is charging.

  5. I was fitted with an upper NTI about eight years ago. I have nighttime bruxism, migraines and clench 24/7. The NTI was a miracle for my migraines and my dentist said at the time it was the only FDA approved oral appliance. When I received my NTI I lived in an large city. It fit so tightly that I had to pull it off in the am with force and if claims are made it comes off it has not been fitted correctly. I swore by this appliance but recently it was lost. I never noticed any tooth movement or any problems other than if you have long nails it is difficult to remove. I have since moved to a small town (25,000 people) and not one dentist prescribes this unit and only one dentist even knew of it. The dentist that knew of it said it was a bad choice and to stay away from it for various reasons. I am now lost as to what to choose and have broken three teeth already from my bruxism costing me over $2500 in repairs. I am so confused from reading all the complaints and getting a speech from the dentist here to go “old school”. Why do urban dentists push it and non-urban are resistant? I loved the thing and thankfully my dental insurance paid half. I am just scared to commit now…go old-style and be disappointed or back to NTI and possibly realize my bite is ruined? Reading the internet has made me more confused than ever! If some dental experts would PLEASE give us sufferers good advice I would be a happy person. Back in 2011 a person could purchase the NTI straight from the company online and do a mail-order mold for about $475 which I found rather interesting but I greatly suggest not to do this!!! The NTI needs EXACT AND SPECIALIZED fitting and shaping and you need that from your dentist/hygentist. I guess I need somebody to decide for me. Curiously, what are the ballpark costs of the other “usual” appliances anybody? No dentist will even give a quote where I live without stammering about contingencies. Any comments please post.

  6. Hi Terri, I am not a dentist and I may confuse you more…but I am as confused as you are. I have been grinding since early childhood and am now 48 years old. I have jaw pain, severe migraines and neck pain. Funny, none of the hundreds of doctors and dentists through the years ever suggested my migraines and neck pain might be caused by the grinding. I have 6 cracked back teeth (didn’t know this until recently), and one was so badly damaged it had to be pulled. Another, I had to pay almost 2000.00 (after insurance) to have a post and crown put in.

    My old dentist (I switched about 8 months ago) said there is nothing I could do about the cracked teeth and did not recommend any kind of guard. My new dentist swears by the NTI and of course my insurance doesn’t cover it. His office charges approximately $470.00 for the NTI. I do not have the money to purchase it, nor do I have the money to pay for anymore ruined teeth.

    I have decided to try the GrindGuard N. Only because it is the only grinding guard I can find that uses the same theory as the NTI. That being using the front teeth for the guard. I like this idea a lot, since the over the counter mold-your-own guards gag me, make me salivate like crazy, and are very uncomfortable when I sleep. I have a very small mouth and no matter what I do to make them fit, they are too bulky. So, a guard that uses the front teeth is worth a try.

    I have ordered the GrindGuard N for 69.95 plus 7.95 shipping and handling. I cannot find many reviews on this, but it has a 30 day no question money back guarantee – so it’s worth a try. Best of luck to you and I will update on my satisfaction with the product.

    • Hi Lori,

      How did the GrindNGuard go? I was considering one of these.

  7. Lori, did you get the new guard? I want to know if it is working for you. I clench on whatever night guard I use and they all hurt my teeth. My sister who also clenched used one of these ones that sit only on front teeth and a few years later no longer clenches.

  8. I have been wearing an NTI device for about 6 months. It’s been wonderful for my bruxism. However, I woke up this morning and it’s cracked in half! I’m sure my dentist said it would never break or crack. I wore my regular night guard through in about 6 months. I pray they are guaranteed and will replace it for free. From what I’m reading here, it doesn’t sound promising.

  9. I just got an NTI. It is so tight on my front upper teeth that it hurts. In fact it hurt for almost 20 hours later. Also I am tasting a chemical leeching out of the NTI. I felt nauseous. I had to take it out. I also have veneers on my front teeth and while wearing the NTI I can hear the glue popping off. My veneers fell off twice before. So now after paying $400 for the device I am afraid to wear it. I also felt like it would change my bite. Has anyone had this happen to them. This device makes me really salivate that I can’t swallow well when it happens when I am trying to sleep. Plus I have trouble in the morning from salivating the night before.

    • Yes I have similar experience Lin my upper teeth hurt and felt like they were being pushed and I woke up in pain. I totally regret buying it.

  10. I used a NTI for 6 months and really liked it compared to the bigger ones. It was *supposed* to make me reduce bite force by forcing the front teeth to take the strain instead of the back ones.
    I had to stop using it because it was making me buck-toothed so got *another* custom guard.
    I have recently had huge success with a biofeedback device that is actually preventing grinding rather than just absorbing it.

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The information provided on this site is for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for advice from your physician or other health care professional. You should consult with a healthcare professional if you have or suspect you might have a health problem.