Whether you’re playing a casual game of soccer with your friends on the weekend, or if your child is playing point guard for the high school basketball team, mouthguards are important. If you have a tooth knocked out, there is no guarantee that it can be saved and fixed.
What Are Mouthguards?
Mouthguards are generally made of soft plastic or rubber and are typically worn only over your top teeth. These devices help cushion your mouth from any trauma to your face, protecting your teeth, tongue, cheeks, and jaw.
How Do Mouthguards Protect My Mouth?
If you’re not wearing a mouthguard during a basketball game and the ball hits your mouth, your teeth and jaw will absorb the full force of the impact.
If you’re wearing a mouthguard, the guard will absorb the energy from the force, minimizing the impact. Not only will it reduce the impact on your teeth, it evenly spreads the impact over the entire guard, reducing the likelihood that you will have a tooth knocked out.
When Should I Wear A Mouthguard?
If you play any type of sport, whether it’s just for fun or for competition, you should wear a mouthguard.
While mouthguards are required in many contact sports, a mouthguard should be worn while participating in any sport.
If you have dental work (like braces or a dental bridge), it is crucial that you wear a mouthguard any time you play a sport. Any impact could damage your dental appliances. Impact could also seriously harm your cheeks without a barrier between the dental appliance and your cheeks.
Types of Mouthguards
There are 3 general types of mouthguards available.
- Boil and Bite
Custom-made mouthguards are generally the most expensive type of mouthguard because the dentist forms the guard to your teeth for the best fit and comfort.
If you have special dental appliances, a custom-made guard may be the best option for you.
A “boil and bite” mouthguard is the next best option and offers a more custom fit than stock mouthguards. With this type of mouthguard, you soften the guard in boiling water and then insert the guard into your mouth; this allows the guard to adapt to the shape of your mouth.
This kind of mouthguard can typically be purchased at sporting goods stores and drugstores.
A stock mouthguard can also be purchased in the same places, but this type of guard is already pre-formed. These guards are generally bulkier than the other two options and won’t fit as well.
People sometimes find it difficult to breathe and talk with this type of guard. However, having a stock mouthguard is a much better option that leaving your mouth unprotected.
Talk to the Dentist
Dr. Jue will be able to recommend the best way to protect your teeth and any dental appliances you have when playing sports.
Make sure you keep the guard clean to further protect your teeth and gums.
For more information or to schedule a dental appointment, contact A Beautiful Smile at Lake Pointe in Sugar Land, Texas. We are committed to providing you and your family with expert dental care.