Mouthguards are used to protect the teeth and jaws of people who play contact sports. In many organised sports, it is a requirement to wear a mouthguard during games and training. There are other sports, like soccer, in which a mouthguard isn’t mandatory, but a very good idea.
A well-designed, customised mouthguard is able to protect the teeth, jaws and even the brain from a great deal of injury and trauma as a result of sudden impacts that can happen in sports.
Wearing a sports mouthguard is part of every athlete’s preventive dental care.
What is a Customised Sports Mouthguard?
Customised sports mouthguards are built to fit around the athlete’s teeth. The fit is snug over the teeth and extends to cover part of the gum. In this way, it doesn’t just protect the crowns (top parts) of teeth; it protects the roots of teeth and the jawbone as well.
Because of this precise fit, the mouthguard is generally comfortable to wear and won’t easily dislodge. The mouthguard won’t interfere with breathing and speech.
Special Features of Our Customised Mouthguards
We can make mouthguards in single, dual or multi-colours to match your team colours. The athlete’s name can be embedded in the plastic to make identification easy.
Elite-level athletes may require a more robust, articulated mouthguard; these are also available in our practice.
How Do Sports Mouthguards Work?
If the athlete receives a blow to the face, the mouthguard absorbs much of the energy from the impact. The snug fit of the mouthguard protects the teeth and jawbone. It can even protect the brain from much of the energy from the impact, minimising the occurrence of concussion.
What Is The Alternative to Professionally-Made Mouthguards?
“Over-the-counter” mouthguards are sold in pharmacies or sports stores. There are two types:
- Stock mouthguards – worn straight from the pack
- Boil-and-bite – which allows a low level of customisation.
The trouble with uncustomised mouthguards is that they are made from a softer, less resilient plastic. They do not fit properly over the teeth and gums, and hence do not offer the same level of protection to the teeth and jaws.
The poor fit sometimes means the athlete must hold the mouthguard in place with their teeth clenched together, which makes speaking a challenge and breathing during exertion difficult.
Over-the-counter mouthguards often require trimming, but it is very difficult to create a smooth surface afterwards. The rough edges can irritate the inside of the mouth. Unfortunately, many young athletes ditch their mouthguard during games or training because of this lack of comfort.
The Cost Of Mouthguards
Over-The-Counter Mouthguards Are Cheaper But Offer Far Less Protection
Over-the-counter mouthguards are a cheaper option than customised ones, but they offer far less protection. It’s therefore much more likely that a blow to a tooth will result in damage.
It is important to remember that the costs of the dental (and possibly medical) treatment after a severe dental injury can be significant. The cost of a properly-fitted custom sports mouthguard is far less than the costs associated with rebuilding a broken tooth or replacing a tooth that has been knocked out.
Custom Mouthguards: An Investment in Your Athlete’s Health
Many families buy their young athletes comfortable and durable sports footwear and replace them as the shoes wear out. Wearing comfortable, durable footwear contributes to a young athlete’s performance. We believe that a customised mouthguard is just as important an investment in the young athlete’s health and safety.
Important Information for Athletes
Dental First Aid
We believe that it’s important for all athletes, parents, coaches and managers to know dental first aid. Visit our Dental First Aid page and be sure to download our handy guide to Dental First Aid.
Articles About Sports Mouthguards
Visit our articles section to read some interesting articles about sports mouthguards.