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Mouthguards are coverings worn over teeth. They are used to protect teeth during sports. Anyone playing a sport for fun or competitively should protect their teeth with a mouthguard.
Generally speaking, there are two types of mouthguards. Retail mouth guards and custom made mouth guards.
Retail mouthguards are the guards you can buy from the sporting good stores or department stores. Some retail mouthguards you just place in your mouth and others you boil and fit your mouth. Regardless of which one we are talking about, they are bulky, awkward and ill-fitting. Most importantly, they offer little protection for your precious teeth.
Custom-fitted mouthguards are individually designed and made in our dental office with the assistance of a professional laboratory. It is a very simple process—an impression is made of your teeth. From that impression, a mouthguard is made.
Mouthguards offer the most protection for your teeth and the best comfort while playing sports. Custom made mouthguards will cost a bit more than a retail mouth guard but remember you only have one set of permanent teeth to last your entire life teeth!
In most cases, mouth guards cover your upper teeth only. (In rare cases, such as if you wear braces, your dentist will make a mouth guard for the lower teeth as well.)
An effective mouthguard should be comfortable, resist tears, be durable and easy to clean, and should not restrict your breathing or speech. We can suggest the best mouthguard for you.
Who Needs a Mouth Guard? Mouthguards should be used by anyone — children and adults — who play contact sports such as football, boxing, soccer, ice hockey, basketball, lacrosse, and field hockey. However, even those participating in non-contact sports (for example, gymnastics) and any recreational activity (for example, skateboarding, mountain biking) that might pose a risk of injury to the mouth would benefit from wearing a protective mouthguard.
Why Use a Mouth Guard When Playing Sports? Accidents can happen during any physical activity, the advantage of using a mouth guard during sports is that it can help limit the risk of mouth-related injuries to your lips, tongue, and soft tissues of your mouth. Mouthguards also help you avoid chipped or broken teeth, nerve damage to a tooth, or even tooth loss.
Can I Wear a Mouth Guard if I Wear Braces? Yes. Since an injury to the face could damage braces or other fixed appliances, a properly fitted mouthguard may be particularly important for people who wear braces or have fixed bridgework. We can determine the mouth guard that will provide the best protection for your unique mouth work.