Sports Mouthguards

Sports mouthguards, also known as sportsguards or mouth protectors, are a crucial piece of equipment for athletes of all ages, regardless of the sport they are involved in. Unfortunately, many athletes, or their parents, underestimate the importance of mouthguards, leading to a higher risk of dental injuries or tooth loss during sporting activities.

We place a strong emphasis on preventive dental care, which is why we advocate for the use of custom-made sportsguards. While some may believe that mouthguards are only necessary for contact sports like football or hockey, it's important to recognize that various sports, including solo or non-contact sports, can pose dental injury risks. For instance, we recommend sportsguards for sports such as volleyball, soccer, gymnastics, mountain biking, and rollerblading. Dental injuries can occur during these sports due to accidental falls, collisions, or other unforeseen circumstances.

A custom sportsguard provides a tailored fit for your unique dental anatomy, ensuring better protection against potential injuries. By wearing a sportsguard, athletes can significantly reduce the risk of dental trauma, such as chipped or broken teeth, knocked-out teeth, or injuries to the lips, tongue, and jaw.

Ultimately, our goal is to help athletes enjoy their chosen sports safely and maintain their oral health. A custom sportsguard is an essential tool in achieving that goal, as it offers the best protection against dental injuries during athletic activities.

What Is A Sports Mouthguard?

Mouthguards, including sports mouthguards, are designed to provide protection for the mouth and face during various activities, particularly sports. Their primary functions are to safeguard the teeth, gums, soft tissues in the mouth, and jaws from potential impacts, blows, or collisions.

There are three main types of sports mouthguards: ready-made, boil-and-bite, and custom mouthguards. It's important for patients to understand the differences among these types to make informed decisions about their protective gear.

Ready-Made Sportguards

These mouthguards are also known as over-the-counter or stock mouthguards and are readily available at drugstores or pharmacies. They are typically constructed from plastic or hard rubber and come in a U shape, with a trough for the teeth and a lip that extends above the gum line to protect the gums. Ready-made mouthguards are budget-friendly but offer limited customization. They are usually available in a few basic sizes, so the fit is not personalized, making them less comfortable than other options.

Boil-&-Bite Sportsguards

These mouthguards are also available at drugstores or pharmacies. Unlike ready-made mouthguards, they require a bit of customization. Boil-and-bite mouthguards need to be heated (often in boiling water) until they become soft and pliable. After heating, the athlete bites into the softened mouthguard, allowing it to mold around their teeth. While this process offers a better fit than ready-made mouthguards, they still do not qualify as custom-made. Boil-and-bite mouthguards tend to be less durable because they must be soft enough for the initial shaping. They may not last as long and could be damaged if the athlete chews on them.

Custom Sportsguards

Custom mouthguards are the most personalized and recommended option. They are prescribed and produced by a dentist to precisely fit the patient's mouth. The process starts with taking a mold or impression of the patient's teeth, typically using a paste. From this mold, a stone model of the teeth is created, and the mouthguard is formed over it. Custom mouthguards are crafted from durable plastic that is either poured into a mold or vacuum-formed. These mouthguards provide a secure and comfortable fit, are more likely to stay in place, and allow the athlete to speak and breathe normally. Although custom mouthguards are more expensive, they are considered the best choice because they offer optimal protection and comfort. Athletes are more likely to wear them as intended when they feel comfortable.

Overall, the choice of a mouthguard should be based on the specific needs of the athlete and the level of protection and comfort required. Custom mouthguards are often recommended by dental professionals for maximum protection and convenience, particularly during high-impact sports activities.