Being involved in a sport is a great activity for people of all ages. Sports get you up, active, and involved. They are a great form of exercise and are much fun for those involved. However, many sports do pose a risk for injury. You may collide with another player, be hit by a ball or piece of equipment, or take a fall on the field. To prevent injuries, you wear the appropriate protective gear. Often, this gear consists of pads and a helmet. Helmets are designed to protect your head from serious injuries. Despite wearing a helmet, though, it is still possible to be faced with oral trauma. At Marketplace Dental Excellence we can help you to protect your mouth with a custom fit mouth guard.
What is a Mouth Guard?
A mouth guard is an oral device that is worn when playing sports. It is designed to fit over your top teeth, providing a cushion in the event of an impact. While one of the main functions of a mouth guard is to protect your teeth, protecting them from damage, it also has several other functions. A good mouth guard protects the teeth from being loosened or dislodged, it protects the soft tissues of your mouth from lacerations and other injuries, and it protects your jaw from potential dislocation or fractures.
Types of Mouth Guards
There are a few different types of mouth guards available.
- Stock mouth guards. Stock mouth guards are the least expensive mouth guard available. They are also widely available at sporting goods stores. While inexpensive, these mouth guards have a major disadvantage. Stock mouth guards are pre-molded. This means that they are not likely to fit your mouth properly. An ill-fitting mouth guard is not only uncomfortable, but it can also increase your risk for injury.
- Boil and bite mouth guards. Boil and bite mouth guards are also widely available at sporting goods stores. These mouth guards are not pre-molded. They are designed to be boiled in water, cooled slightly, and bitten into. This provides a semi-custom fit. While they provide more protection than a stock mouth guard, fits are not always accurate.
- Custom-fit mouth guards. At Marketplace Dental Excellence, we provide custom fit mouth guards. These mouth guards are custom created from impressions of your mouth. This provides you with an accurate, comfortable fit. Custom-fit mouth guards may cost more than other mouth guards, but the protection they provide is unparalleled
Mouth Guard Care
For your mouth guard to provide you with the greatest protection, it is important that you take proper care of it. Mouth guards should be rinsed in water before and after every use. They can be brushed with toothpaste, or cleaned with soap and water, to remove any bacteria that may be lingering.
When not in use, your mouth guard should be stored in the hard case. The case should have vent holes to permit air flow. This will help to prevent bacterial buildup. Mouth guards should not be left in direct sunlight or exposed to high temperatures for long periods of time, as these elements can damage the material. Inspect your mouth guard periodically. Any wear or damage can decrease its effectiveness, and the mouth guard should be replaced as soon as any issues are noticed. With proper care, your mouth guard will be able to provide you with optimal protection while you play.
Mouth guards can provide your teeth, soft tissues, and your jaw while you enjoy playing sports. For more information, and to get your custom fit mouth guard, call Marketplace Dental Excellence today at (480) 545-8700 to schedule your appointment.