Athletic mouthguard types, benefits, and maintenance explained
At Regent Avenue Dental Centre, we’re more than familiar with the injuries which can come from not wearing an athletic mouthguard. According to the American Dental Association, over 200,000 oral injuries are prevented yearly because athletic mouthguards were worn. Simply put, if you’re participating in a sport of any kind, you should be wearing an athletic mouthguard.
Different types of athletic mouthguard
Mouthguards can be broken down into three different types:
Ready-made (stock mouth)
Available at pretty much any sporting goods or drugstore, stock mouthguards are bulky and are held in place in the mouth by constantly biting down. If you loosen your grip, it will probably fall out. Breathing is more difficult with this type as well, so it’s not great for athletes who are consistently running or exerting a ton of energy. We suggested them only because they exist.
Boil and bite
The boil and bite mouthguards are probably the most popular athletic mouthguard available today. When you’re ready to fit it to your mouth, boil the mouthguard until it’s flexible (follow the instructions it comes with). Then you’ll form it to your mouth by biting down and holding it in place with your fingers. Better than the ready-made mouthguard – but still lacks proper fitting and full protection.
Regent Avenue Dental Centre highly recommends the custom-made option to any athlete in search of the perfect athletic mouthguard. Designed by your dentist, custom-made mouthguards have proven to be the best in adaption, comfort, retention and durability.
Benefits of wearing an athletic mouthguard
The athletic mouthguard comes with benefits that far outweigh the irritation that some may have when it comes to wearing them. Mouthguards will help cushion any blow to the face. They may reduce the risk of mild concussions and trauma by protecting the jaw.
Athletic mouthguard maintenance tips for longevity
- Chewing on or attempting to alter your mouthguard can damage it and could lead to decreased effectiveness and protection.
- Avoid contact with hot water, other heated surfaces, drinking hot beverages, and direct exposure to sunlight as your mouthguard can become distorted or misshaped.
- Storing your mouthguard properly in its case is important to benefit damage, to permit air circulation, and to reduce the potential for bacteria.
- Check the condition of the mouthguard occasionally and replace it if it has holes or tears, becomes loose, or irritates the teeth or gums.
- If the mouthguard absorbs a strong blow, it may need to be replaced to maintain a proper fit and protection.
Keep your athletic mouthguard clean
Keeping an athletic mouthguard clean is relatively easy. You can use a gentle toothpaste and water to give it a good scrub. Soak it in equal parts 3% hydrogen peroxide and water for about 10 minutes or wash it with antibacterial soap.
No matter how you clean it, make sure you rinse it before you put it in your mouth. And once it’s in, leave it there! Taking it out constantly is a breeding ground for bacteria. Trust us, your mouth doesn’t need any additional bacteria.
Need an athletic mouthguard? Call us now – 204.817.8915
At Regent Avenue Dental Centre, we recommend everyone use a proper, custom-made mouthguard during sporting activities where physical contact can occur. Whether you’re a seasoned recreational league player, a concerned parent watching your child from the sideline, or participate in competitive leagues – we’re here to help. Make an appointment today to discuss your options for an athletic mouthguard. Setting up an appointment is easy – via our website or by calling 204.817.8915.