Do you or your child play sports? It is important that you wear a mouth guard to protect your teeth and the surrounding tissues from injury. Wearing a mouth guard during sports can greatly reduce the risk of injury to the lips, tongue, and soft tissues of the mouth. A mouth guard can also help the wearer avoid chipped or broken teeth or tooth loss. Mouth guards are especially important during contact sports like football and soccer. However, even those who play noncontact sports like gymnastics can benefit from wearing a mouth guard.
Types of Mouth Guards
The most effective mouth guard is one that has been custom made for you by your dentist. These mouth guards offer the best protection and fit. Another type of mouth guard is the stock mouth guard. These come pre-formed and ready to wear. Unfortunately, they don’t fit as well as custom-made mouth guards. Boil and bite mouth guards can be bought at most sporting goods stores. The mouth guard is softened in hot water and then placed in the mouth and shaped around the teeth.
Braces and Mouth Guards
Injury to the mouth can damage braces or other fixed appliances. Because of this, it is especially important for those who wear braces to wear protective mouth guards during sports. Your dentist or orthodontist will provide you with a custom-fitted mouth guard that will meet your needs.
Caring for Your Mouth Guard
Before and after each use, rinse your mouth guard with cold water or a mouthwash. You may also clean it with a mild soap and a toothbrush. Keep your mouth guard away from hot temperatures, like hot water, hot surfaces, or direct sunlight. This will help protect your mouth guard from distorting. Check your mouth guard for wear and tear occasionally. If you find holes or tears in your mouth guard, or if it becomes uncomfortable or loose, replace it. Bring your mouth guard to your regular dental checkups to have our dentist examine it.
We invite you to contact our office today to learn more and to schedule a visit with our dentist.