If you or your child is involved in any contact sport, it’s best to be fitted with a custom-made, dental-grade mouthguard.
Dental injuries are the most common type of facial injuries sustained from sports, including broken or damaged teeth, broken jaws or injured lips and cheeks.
Here at Trembath Dental, we recommend choosing a dentist-made mouthguard for anyone who plays contact sports like football or hockey, and patients participating in non-contact sports like skateboarding or mountain biking. All these activities can potentially pose a risk to your face, mouth, jaw and teeth.
How does a mouthguard work?
A strong, well-fitted mouthguard absorbs and redistributes the forces from a heavy blow to the mouth. The impact of the blow is thus softened as a mouthguard helps in spreading the energy generated by a force over a greater surface area. A heavy force applied to the teeth can easily fracture a tooth or cause significant damage to any dental work you may have had done, which can be quite costly to repair or replace. A cost-effective, preventative solution would be to consider a custom-made mouthguard to protect your jaw, teeth, gums and the insides of your lips and cheeks
Why get a mouthguard from a dentist?
Custom-made mouth guards are designed specifically for the wearer in a specialised laboratory and its design is based on your activities. These mouthguards mould perfectly to your mouth and offer far greater protection and comfort than their over-the-counter counterparts. A custom-made mouthguard will reduce the risk of dental injuries and can lessen the impact of head knock related concussions. Other benefits of a custom-made mouthguard are that they:
Dentist-made mouthguards are generally made from a higher-quality material, and are built-to-last. A poorly fitting mouthguard may cause the wearer to chew the mouthguard, which may damage it and wear it out quickly.
Are more comfortable and fit better
You might have seen people playing sport with their mouthguard half-out of their mouth, pushed off the surface of their teeth, or being chewed. This is likely to be because the mouthguard is poorly-fitting and uncomfortable. This is problematic, as if a trauma is sustained, the mouthguard will offer little-to-no protection.
Won’t restrict your breathing or speaking
With some mouthguards, it can be difficult to communicate with your team, which is an important part of any sport! Custom-made mouthguards fit securely and comfortably in the mouth, and don’t inhibit speaking or breathing, which makes you less likely to dislodge them, or remove them in play.
The thickness of the mouthguard plays an important role in its ability to protect your teeth and jaw, as it can more readily and more effectively absorb the shock of a collision with the jaw or face. The average custom mouthguards are double the thickness of an average over-the-counter mouthguard, which enables them to offer far greater protection.
How we make your mouthguard at Trembath Dental?
First, Dr Trembath will take an impression of your teeth using a kind of dental putty that moulds perfectly to your teeth. The dental mould is then sent to a laboratory where it is used to fabricate your mouthguard. Once your mouthguard is ready, we will give you a call to come in for a fitting. During this fitting we will ensure that the mouthguard is a perfect fit and doesn’t cause discomfort.
How do I take care of my mouthguard?
It is relatively simple to care for your mouthguard. This can be done by:
- Rinsing your mouthguard before each use;
- Brushing your mouthguard with a toothbrush and toothpaste after each use;
- Storing your mouthguard in a container that has vents;
- Refraining from exposing your mouthguard to the sun or boiling water;
- Replacing your mouthguard after excessive wear. This is usually done every two years. However, children’s mouthguards will have to be changed more frequently due to the changes that naturally occur in a child’s mouth.
Every athlete involved in contact sports are at risk of orofacial injury. Be smart and wear a mouthguard! For more information on mouthguards, contact the experienced team today.
Your dentist will take an impression of your teeth, to ensure that the mouthguard is the perfect fit for your unique mouth. The custom-made mouthguard is then created using this mould and should be with you in 1-2 weeks. Most athletes prefer using custom, dentist-made mouthguards for this reason; they fit, and feel more comfortable and secure!
Patients with braces are also able (and are recommended) to have custom, dentist-made mouthguards, to both protect the mouth and to ensure that it is a comfortable fit around the wires.
Some dentists have the option to customise your mouthguard; whether that is your favourite colour, your team’s colours, or the colours of the team that you support!
While there is no direct link between sports mouthguards preventing concussions, they can certainly lessen the risk. This is because dentist-made mouthguards can help to shock-absorb, stabilise the head and neck, and limit movement in the event of a direct hit to the head or jaw while playing sport. Without a mouthguard, the jaw and teeth must absorb the shock, which can cause significant damage. These custom mouthguards offer greater protection than those bought over-the-counter.
The lifespan of a mouthguard can vary, depending on use. Mouthguards can wear down over time as they are chewed and used. More frequent replacement may be needed for children/ adolescents whose teeth and jaw is still developing, or who are undergoing orthodontic treatment. Dental mouthguards are longer-lasting and more durable than those that can be bought over-the-counter. If you are unsure, you can bring your mouthguard in to your regular dental appointment and your dentist can determine whether it needs replacing.