WHY DO YOU NEED A MOUTHGUARD?
One of the most common causes of dental injuries occurs from deliberate or accidental impact to the face while participating in sporting activities.
Injuries to the face and jaw, such as damaged or knocked out teeth, cut lips or even a broken jaw arise while playing sport.
However these injuries can be minimised or even prevented by wearing a custom fitting mouthguard.
Custom fitting mouthguards help to absorb and spread the impact of a blow to your face. Studies have shown that compared with wearing no mouthguard, using a mouthguard reduced the number of fractured teeth and head/jaw injuries.
WHEN SHOULD YOU WEAR A MOUTHGUARD?
Your mouthguard should be worn while playing or training in any sporting activities, especially where there is significant risk of mouth injuries.
These sports may include but are no limited too, football, hockey, basketball, soccer, martial arts and rugby.
Just like you are required to wear the correct shoes, clothing and equipment, such as helmets and shin guards, custom fitted mouthguards are designed to help prevent injury.
In some sporting codes and schools it is often part of the rules and compulsory for a mouthguard to be worn went participating.
CUSTOM FITTED vs. OVER THE COUNTER MOUTHGUARDS
Over the counter mouthguards or “bite and boil” are far less effective than those that are custom fit by your dentist.
Bite and boil mouthguards only require you to place the mouthguard in boiling water then self fit by biting into the mould.
This results in ill-fitting mouthguards consequently ending in dental trauma and injuries that could have been prevented, if only it was fit to your mouth’s individual needs.
Poor fitting mouth guards require the user to constantly be holding the mould in position, resulting in distractions from the sport that may end in injury.
On the other hand, custom fitted mouthguards are made by your dentist and designed so that it is fits YOUR mouth.
The dentist will take impressions of your teeth to create a plaster model. This allows the dentist to properly assess your mouth and teeth, therefore providing a mouthguard made to solely suit your individual needs.
Custom fit mouthguards will not shift or fall out, therefore it is comfortable, well fitted and allows you to speak clearly, without restricting your airways.
The best mouthguards are those made by your dentist and although they are more expensive than its store bought counter part, it is more comfortable and protects you better. The cost of a custom fitted mouthguard is far cheaper than the expense of complex and lengthy dental treatment that is a product of an ill fitting mouthguard or no mouthguard at all.
HOW TO CARE FOR YOUR MOUTHGUARD
Always store in a rigid container (supplied by your dentist on completion of your mouthguard).
Always rinse your mouthguard after use.
Mouthguards may change shape in hot temperatures so always ensure that it is stored in a cool place.
On occasions rinse your mouthguard with mouthwash.
Ensure that your mouthguard is checked regularly by your dentist to make sure that it is fitting correctly.
You may need a replacement mouthguard after your secondary teeth have come through or if you have damaged the mouthguard
5 GOOD REASONS TO WEAR A MOUTHGUARD
- Cushions teeth against impact
- Protects against jaw joint injuries
- Protects against soft tissue injuries
- Helps prevent neck and jaw injuries
- May help reduce concussion