Patients who indulge in contact activities or athletic sports are susceptible to injury. Among the most vulnerable part to get injured are your teeth. To protect them, dentists recommend mouthguards, which are coverings worn over teeth to prevent injuries to your mouth. These protective devices prevent severe injuries such as jawbone fractures, broken teeth or tooth loss. They are also used to avoid bruxism or teeth grinding.
There are various types of mouthguards available, including the following.
- Stock mouthguards – These are ready to wear protectors that can be bought from department or sporting goods stores. Stock mouthguards are bulky, not adjustable, and make breathing or talking difficult.
- Mouth-formed mouthguards -These are also known as boil and bite mouth protectors. They fit better, due to the thermoplastic material they are made from, and can also be bought from sporting goods stores. Boil and bite mouthguards are placed in hot water to soften, put in the mouth and then shaped around the teeth using tongue and finger pressure.
- Custom-made mouthguards – These are tailor-made in a dental office or laboratory based on your dentist’s recommendations. Although they are expensive, custom-fitted mouthguards offer the most comfort and protection.
These removable dental appliances cover the upper teeth only. Yet, in cases where the patients wear braces or other fixed dental appliances, they are also worn on the lower teeth.
Accidents do happen during physical sporting or recreational activities! Take advantage of mouthguards to help limit the risks of injuries to your mouth, lips and tongue. Call or email us today to discuss this further with our dentists.