Often when the word mouthguard is mentioned, images of hockey players with missing teeth are conjured. In reality, the use of a mouthguard extends into a great number of sports. Determining if you would benefit from wearing one is simple: Do you want to protect your teeth and jaw while playing sports? If you answered yes, then exploring mouthguard options is for you. Choosing to get a custom mouthguard depends on what your personal preferences are regarding comfort level, price range, materials, and protection level.
What Exactly Is a Custom Mouthguard?
A custom-made mouth guard is fabricated by a dentist. The dentist takes a detailed mold of your teeth and then creates the protection out of thermoplastic materials. Since they are designed to fit perfectly in your mouth, they are considered by many to be the most protective option available.
What Are The Benefits?
Wearing a custom mouthguard while playing sports is the best protection for not only your teeth but your jaw and head. It will help cushion a blow to the face, minimizing the risk of broken teeth and injuries to your lips, tongue, face or jaw. Additionally, they can help absorb shock, stabilize the head and neck, and limit movement caused by a direct hit to the jaw; thus, reducing the risk of damage a blow to the head can cause.
How Long Do They Last?
Generally speaking, a custom mouthguard should be replaced every few years. To increase its longevity, a mouth guard must be taken care of and cleaned properly like any other appliance that is utilized to help your teeth. It should also be replaced once it becomes worn out because it will no longer offer a high level of protection.
Here are some tips on how to keep your mouthguard clean and in good condition:
- Gently scrub it after each use with a toothbrush and some toothpaste.
- Store it in its protective case.
- To prevent it from melting or becoming deformed, keep it out of hot water or the sun.
- Avoid chewing on it.
- Replace it if it doesn’t fit properly and at the beginning of a new sports season
How Do I get One?
Custom-fit mouthguards can only be obtained through your dentist. If you are eligible for one, your dentist will arrange a time when you can be fitted for a dental mould to begin the process of creating your custom mouthguard.
If you are considering a custom mouthguard or have questions regarding one, be sure to talk to your dental professional.