Dental splints: overview & comparison

What are the different kinds of dental splints and what are they used for? Here you will find an overview of the main types of dental trays and splints and their use cases.

Reading time: 7min

Topic: Products, alternatives

Types of dental splints

What is a dental splint?

A dental splint is a plastic device that is fitted to the dental arch. Also known as dental trays, they can have different functions:

  • Correcting crooked teeth and malocclusions
  • Protecting the teeth from nocturnal grinding
  • Bleaching or whitening teeth
  • Protecting the teeth during contact sports like boxing

Depending on the use, dental trays vary in the type of material used and the recommended wear time.

Types of dental splints: an overview

  Application Price Use case

Mild to moderate dental corrections

from CHF 3,490

Adolescents and adults

Night Aligners

Mild dental corrections

from CHF 3,490


Grinding guards

Nocturnal grinding, grinding one's teeth

from CHF 500

For people who suffer from bruxism/grinding their teeth

Bleaching trays

For whitening teeth

from CHF 25*

Adults who wish to have whiter teeth

Sports mouthguards

Protection from impact

from CHF 10

For contact sports

Snoring splints

Preventing snoring

from CHF 50

For snorers

Retainer Splints

Keeping your bite in place following orthodontic treatment

from CHF 300

After successfully correcting your teeth

*Free at bestsmile after undergoing Aligner treatment of both jaws

Transparent dental splints (Aligners)

Transparent aligner

Transparent braces are one of the most well-known types of dental splint. Aligners move the teeth step-by-step into the desired position and are considered to be a practical and discreet alternative to conventional metal braces (brackets) for many cases of malocclusion and crooked teeth.

How Aligners work

Transparent dental trays are switched out every two weeks and move the teeth evermore slightly into the right position. They are suitable for mild to moderate malocclusions. Just like other orthodontic devices, the splints apply pressure to the teeth and can correct the following types of malocclusion in a short period of time:

Aligners are manufactured using ultra-modern 3D printing processes, are tailored exactly to your anatomy and consist of medical-grade plastic.

Aligners: pros and cons


  • Discreet look
  • Removable
  • Easy oral hygiene
  • Fair pricing
  • Custom-made for you
  • Fast results
  • Low level of pain


  • Not suitable for all malocclusions
  • Requires responsibility and cooperation from the patient

How much do invisible braces cost?

From CHF 3,490 at bestsmile (one jaw). More information on Aligner costs.

To see which option is best for you, come visit us in one of our practices and get advice from our experienced dentists and orthodontists.

Book an appointment

Night splints for your teeth

Night splint for teeth

How night splints work

Transparent night splints work just the same as conventional Aligners. Each new dental tray pushes the teeth more towards the desired final position. The difference between conventional aligners and night splints is the length of wear: bestsmile Night Aligners only have to be worn for around eight hours while you sleep. This means that night splints are only suitable for correcting mild malocclusions.

Night splints: pros, cons and costs


  • Full flexibility during the day
  • Easy oral hygiene
  • Fair pricing
  • Custom-made for you
  • Fast results
  • Low level of pain


  • Only suitable for mild malocclusions
  • Requires responsibility and cooperation from the patient


From CHF 3,490 at bestsmile (one jaw). More information on Aligner costs.

Free consultation

Grinding guards/Michigan splints (dental trays for bruxism)

Mouth guard for teeth grinding

A mouth guard for teeth grinding, also known as Michigan splint, protects and relieves the jaw muscles and the teeth while you sleep. Many people clench their jaw or grind their teeth while they sleep, which can have various negative consequences. Grinding guards can help reduce the negative impact of bruxism. The bestsmile Night Guard, which is available in combination with an Aligner or Veneer treatment, is custom made for your anatomy and offers an ideal solution.

How grinding guards work

Nocturnal grinding guards are suitable for everyone experiencing headaches, joint pain or muscle aches as a result of bruxism. These grinding splints protect the teeth from getting worn down and relax the jaw muscles.

Grinding guards: pros and cons


  • Protects teeth and veneers
  • Relieves your jaw muscles
  • Alleviates the side effects of grinding your teeth


  • Doesn’t address the root causes of grinding
  • Always has to be worn


More about Night Guards

Snoring splints

Snoring splints are another type of dental splint worn at night. They are often confused with grinding guards. These dental trays open up the throat in order to prevent snoring.

This is an effective solution for people who suffer from snoring and mild sleep apnoea. Snoring splints are worn while you sleep and help free up your airways by gently moving your lower jaw forward. This reduces – and in some cases even eliminates – snoring.

Snoring splints vs. mandibular advancement splints

Mandibular advancement splints, also known as mandibular protrusion splints, are special types of snoring splints that are recommended to certain types of patients. They are similar in function to conventional snoring splits, but with an additional focus on changing the position of the lower jaw in order to open up the airways. Both types of splints are comfortable options to alleviate night-time sleeping disorders and contribute to a good nights sleep.

Retainer splints

Retainer splints keep your new bite in place following successful orthodontic treatment, as an alternative to wire retainers. This helps keep your teeth in their desired final position after concluding your treatment.

If you’re diligent about wearing your retainer, you can help prevent your teeth from sliding back into their old position. Your dentist will tell you when and for how long you should wear the retainer splints. In most cases, they should be worn at night for at least 6 months. If properly taken care of, a retainer splint will last up to 12 months.

You can order retainer splints in convenient sets right in your bestsmile practice.

  • Set of 3, upper jaw: CHF 300
  • Set of 3, lower jaw: CHF 300
  • Set of 6, upper jaw: CHF 500
  • Set of 6, lower jaw: CHF 500
  • Set of 6, upper & lower jaw: CHF 500

Bleaching splints

Teeth whitening splint

How bleaching splints work

Nowadays, many options are available to whiten your teeth. One such option is home bleaching, a procedure in which bleaching gel is placed in a custom-made dental tray fitted to your teeth. Depending on the strength of the gel, the tray is worn for one to eight hours overnight.

Home bleaching with dental splints is considered to be a relatively mild way of whitening your teeth, but it needs to be repeated often in order to ensure a beautiful result.

At bestsmile, you will receive a free bleaching kit if you complete an Aligner treatment for both jaws.


Cleat braces


Sports mouthguards

Sports mouthguards

How sports mouthguards work

If you play certain kinds of contact sports, it is advisable to wear a mouthguard in order to protect your teeth. They are available at low cost at sporting goods stores and online.

Sports mouthguards usually consist of thicker, more flexible material than other types of dental trays, splints and guards. Therefore it’s not recommended to use an Aligner as a substitute for a mouthguard since the material is not appropriate.

Sports mouthguards not only prevent injury to the teeth, but also prevent or minimise injury to the jaw bones, lips and cheeks. In sports like boxing, they are also used to protect against concussions. The upper and lower jaws collide with one another, which creates a pressure wave so great that a concussion may result.

What is the right dental splint for me?

What the best dental splint for you is depends on what you’ll be using it for. If you’re interested in an Aligner, Night Aligner or grinding guard, we invite you to visit us for a consultation directly in one of our practices.

Get expert advice

Last update: 01.11.2023


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