Mouthguards are required equipment for numerous sports and many players choose to wear them even when they are not required in order to protect their teeth. Even if there is no requirement, you should wear one because although our teeth are able to withstand impact, they are actually very fragile. There are a couple different types of mouthguards you can get meaning there are pros and cons to each. The best type for preventing injury is a custom-fitted mouthguard, which you can get from our dental professionals at HomeTown Dental at Lake Worth.
How They Work
Mouthguards are one of the most crucial pieces of equipment in sports. Contact and non-contact sports, such as basketball or baseball, still have the risk of oral injury. For instance, you could get hit in the face with a ball or experience an impact head injury. In this case, you would want a layer of protection for your teeth. The American Dental Association explains that players who wear mouthguards are 82% to 92% less likely to experience dentofacial (teeth and jaw) injuries.
Mouthguards also reduce the risk and severity of head injuries. These help to stabilize your jaw and absorb any shock you receive from head trauma. Studies have shown that mouthguards significantly reduce the risk of concussion. Custom-fitted mouthguards, which you would get from our office, are twice as likely to prevent traumatic brain injury or concussions than your typical over-the-counter (OTC) mouthguards, according to The American Dental Association.
Types of Mouthguards
There are three basic types of mouthguards that you can get. The least effective, but also least expensive, is the OTC mouthguard you would get from various retail or online stores. The next type that costs a bit more, but also offers more protection, is a boil and bite mouthguard. You could also get these from stores and shape them at home. You would simply place them in boiling water to soften them and then shape them around your teeth after they cool, exactly as the name implies. Our dentist can also help you finalize the molding. However, the most protection from any mouthguard is offered by our custom-fitted ones. These are extremely form fitting and offer more protection than any other type of mouthguard.
At your consultation, our dentist will explain this entire process to you. You will also receive instructions on proper usage and ways to keep it clean. After this consultation, we will take an impression (mold) of your mouth. A U-shaped tray is filled with a thickened liquid that forms around your teeth when you bite into the tray. The material slightly hardens so that it holds its shape, but it is still easily removed from your teeth. This is a fairly short process, though the exact time will depend on the specific material being used. Our dentist will explain this at the consult as well.
Our dentist will send your dental mold to our lab so it can be processed. The lab will fill the impression with a material that hardens to replicate your teeth. Then, they will fit a mouthguard around the impression so that it is customized specifically for you. This process typically takes a few weeks from start to finish but our professionals will give you a more detailed timeline when you visit our office. To receive a custom-fitted mouthguard, contact HomeTown Dental at Lake Worth at (682) 516-3532 today.