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Dental Sport Guards

Dental Sport Guards. Learn about the use of the sports guard and the kinds of mouthguard best for use.


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Dental Sport Guards FAQ

What is a dental sport guard?

A dental sport guard, also known as a mouthguard or mouth protector, is a device worn over teeth to protect them from injury during sports or other physical activities. They are particularly important in contact sports like football, hockey, and boxing, but are also recommended for activities like basketball, skateboarding, and gymnastics.

Why are dental sport guards important?

Dental sport guards are crucial because they:

  • Prevent tooth fractures and dislocations.
  • Protect against soft tissue injuries to the lips, cheeks, and tongue.
  • Reduce the risk of jaw injuries.
  • Help prevent concussions by absorbing and redistributing the force of impacts.

What types of dental sport guards are available?

There are three main types of dental sport guards:

  • Stock Mouthguards: Pre-formed and ready to wear. They are the least expensive but often provide the least protection and comfort because they cannot be adjusted to fit your mouth.
  • Boil-and-Bite Mouthguards: Made from thermoplastic material that softens when boiled. The user bites into the softened guard to mold it to their teeth. These offer a better fit than stock mouthguards and are moderately priced.
  • Custom-Fitted Mouthguards: Made by a dentist or dental technician specifically for the user’s mouth. They provide the best fit, comfort, and protection but are the most expensive option.

How should a mouthguard fit?

A properly fitting mouthguard should:

  • Cover all the teeth in one arch (usually the upper).
  • Fit snugly against the teeth and gums without shifting or falling out.
  • Allow the wearer to speak and breathe easily.
  • Be comfortable and not cause irritation or soreness.

How do I care for my mouthguard?

To ensure your mouthguard lasts and remains hygienic, follow these care tips:

  • Rinse it with cool water or mouthwash before and after each use.
  • Clean it regularly with mild soap and a toothbrush.
  • Store it in a sturdy, ventilated container when not in use.
  • Avoid exposing it to high temperatures, which can cause it to warp.
  • Check for signs of wear and tear and replace it if it becomes damaged or loses its fit.

Can I wear braces with a mouthguard?

Yes, athletes with braces can and should wear mouthguards. Custom-fitted mouthguards are particularly recommended for those with braces, as they can be designed to accommodate the braces and provide the necessary protection.

How long do mouthguards last?

The lifespan of a mouthguard depends on its type and how often it is used. Generally:

  • Stock and boil-and-bite mouthguards should be replaced every season or every six months due to wear and changes in the mouth.
  • Custom-fitted mouthguards can last longer, often a year or more, but should be checked regularly for fit and integrity.

Can a mouthguard prevent concussions?

While mouthguards primarily protect teeth and soft tissues, they can also help reduce the risk of concussions by absorbing some of the impact force. However, they are not guaranteed to prevent concussions, so it’s important to use other protective gear and follow safe practices in sports.

Do I need a mouthguard for non-contact sports?

Mouthguards are recommended for any activity where there is a risk of falls, collisions, or impact with hard surfaces. Even in non-contact sports like gymnastics or skateboarding, wearing a mouthguard can help prevent dental injuries.

If you have any further questions or specific concerns about dental sport guards, consult with your dentist or a dental professional to get personalized advice and information.