Why does every athlete need a sports dental mouthguard?
Sports mouthguards are protective devices designed to cover the teeth and gums of athletes during sports activities. They are typically made of durable, flexible materials such as silicone or polyurethane, and can be moulded to custom-fit an individual’s mouth.
The main purpose of sports mouthguards is to reduce the risk of dental injuries that can occur during sports, such as broken or knocked-out teeth, jaw fractures, and soft tissue damage. Here, we will discuss why wearing sports mouthguards is important for athletes of all levels, and explore the various benefits they offer.
Dental injuries in sports
Unfortunately, dental injuries are a common occurrence in sports, and they can have a significant impact on athletes’ oral health and performance.
Common types of dental injuries include:
- Fractured or chipped teeth
- Tooth displacement
- Knocked-out teeth
- Jaw fractures
- Soft tissue injury (lips, tongue, cheeks or gums)
Dental injuries can cause a variety of symptoms, including pain, swelling, bleeding, and difficulty eating or speaking. These injuries can also have serious long-term consequences, such as permanent tooth loss.
In addition to the physical and emotional toll, dental injuries can also be expensive to treat and require significant time away from sports activities. Athletes may need to undergo dental procedures such as root canals, dental implants, or orthodontic treatment.
Benefits of sports mouthguards
Types of sports mouthguards
Another option is the boil-and-bite mouthguard, which can be moulded to fit an individual’s mouth by boiling the guard in water and then biting down on it to create a custom fit. These mouthguards can provide a better fit and are more customisable than stock mouthguards. However, they may not be as durable or long-lasting as custom-made mouthguards.
Custom-made mouthguards are designed by a dentist and can last for several seasons with proper care. They’re recommended for athletes who play high-impact or contact sports, or who have specific dental needs. Although they’re more expensive, they provide the highest level of protection for an athlete’s teeth and mouth.
The most basic mouthguard is the stock type, which is pre-made and comes in limited sizes. They’re inexpensive and easy to find, but they may not fit comfortably or securely for all athletes. They’re good for recreational or low-impact sports, but if an athlete needs more protection, a custom-fit mouthguard might be better.
Proper care and maintenance
Proper care is essential to ensure your sports mouthguard provides maximum protection and longevity. Here are some tips on how to maintain your mouth-guard:
- Cleaning and disinfecting: Regularly clean your mouthguard with a toothbrush and mild soap or non-alcohol-based mouthwash. Rinse it thoroughly with cool water after each use. You can also soak it in a denture cleaner or mouth-guard cleaning solution for more thorough disinfection.
- Storage and replacement: Store your mouthguard in a ventilated container to allow it to dry completely before the next use. Avoid leaving it in direct sunlight or high temperatures, as this can warp or deform the mouthguard. It’s recommended to replace your mouthguard at least once a year, or sooner if it shows signs of wear and tear or if it no longer fits properly.
Prioritising oral health and safety
As an athlete, you know how important it is to stay in top physical condition and perform at your best. However, it’s crucial to recognise that oral health and safety are equally important for overall health and well-being.
One way to protect your teeth and gums during sports activities is by wearing a sports dental mouthguard, and, a custom-fit mouthguard stands out as the superior choice. Tailored precisely to your mouth, it offers unparalleled protection against common sports-related dental injuries. It’s an investment in your well-being and athletic prowess that’s well worth making.