If you are starting a new sport and have never had a mouthguard before, it can be confusing with the choices and options on offer.
Perhaps you’ve had a mouthguard before but have not had the best outcome with it so you may be looking for another option. Let’s look at the different options and discuss the benefits of certain types of mouthguards.
Why is a mouthguard even necessary while playing sport
When playing any type of sport, especially contact sport there may be a likelihood of impact or injury to the face.
The chance of loss or damage to the teeth is increased when playing contact sport. This type of impact can cause trauma to the teeth if you’re not wearing a mouthguard.
Mouthguards are designed to absorb and divert the force of a knock to the mouth or teeth and could help in the prevention of tooth loss or serious damage to a tooth.
Now we know the importance of a mouthguard how to we go about choosing the right one.
Over the counter mouthguards
Over the counter mouthguards are a generic design, meaning they are designed to fit an “average” mouth and teeth.
They are self-fitted by heating them in boiling water then biting down to mould them to the teeth.
This system can create an uncomfortable fit as this type of mouthguard does not mould perfectly to your teeth and jaw.
Custom made mouthguards
Custom made mouthguards are made by taking moulds of your teeth, jaw shape and bite.
A plaster mould is then made by a professional technician from the impression taken, to create the best possible fitting mouthguard to the individual’s teeth and mouth shape.
Developing the most accurate fit by creating the mouthguard to fit firmly will still allow you to talk properly without worrying the guard may fall out.
This type of professional mouthguard provides the best protection for your teeth and reduces the chance of dental injury significantly by successfully cushioning any impact.
How do I take care of my mouthguard?
It is important to clean your mouthguard after every use with warm soapy water, make sure they are completely dry before putting them back into their case.
Always keep the mouthguard in its case when not using it to keep it clean and undamaged.
Use a mouthwash or an aligner cleaner to keep the mouthguard hygienic and at its best condition.
The advantage of a customised mouthguard is that they can be specially designed for the individual person, also accommodating people that may have unusually shaped teeth or teeth that are crowded together, which a standard mouthguard would have trouble fitting over.
It is also great to know if you have braces that this type of mouthguard can be customised and worn comfortably and not jeopardise your orthodontic treatment.
For the best protection, fit and comfort choose a custom made mouthguard. It is definitely worth the investment.