Mouth guards are useful pieces of dental equipment designed to protect your teeth. Mouth guards are used at night to prevent or decrease teeth grinding. Mouth guards are also encouraged for athletes to wear when they play their sports. Mouth guards prevent tooth avulsions and help keep your teeth, gums, and tongue protected. Continue reading to learn more about mouth guards.
1) There Are Different Types Of Mouth Guards
If you have heard of mouth guards before, you have likely either had issues with bruxism (teeth grinding) in the past or played a contact sport. But did you know that there are different types of mouth guards and different ways that mouth guards are made? As previously mentioned there are really only two reasons why mouth guards exist, one is to decrease teeth grinding and the other type is to protect athletics.
The first type of mouth guard is for athletics and typically is sold at athletic stores. This type is usually one-size-fits-all, but the truth is that this type of mouth guard does not fit all. Most often these will be bulky and give little protection.
The second type is only available at the dentist and can be used as night guards or athletic guards. The dentist will use a moldable material to get the imprints of your teeth and use those impressions to create a custom-fit mouth guard. This type of mouth guard will give the best protection of the different options but is also the most expensive.
The third type of mouth guard can be bought online and is used at night. It is the boil and bite option. After you get this mouth guard, you will need to put it in boiling water to soften the material and then bite down on the plastic to make impressions. This option can be an alright option for grinding teeth, but can be very uncomfortable and would not be effective for athletics.
2) Mouth Guards Need To Cared For Properly
Another important thing to know about mouthguards is that there is a proper way to care for mouth guards in order to keep your mouth healthy and help your mouth guard last. The first tip is to make sure that you rinse out your mouth guard after every use. It is also important to make sure that every once and a while you wash the mouth guard with soap and water.
Oftentimes if you get your mouth guard from the dentist, you will receive it in a protective case. Make sure to keep your mouth guard in that case when it is not in use. Keep the case clean and if the mouth guard does not come with a case, be sure to get one and put the case in a safe spot. Lastly, keep your mouth guard in a spot that is out of the sun or another heat source. If a mouth guard is exposed to enough heat then the mold can change and it will no longer fit your teeth correctly.
3) Mouth Guard Myths
The last thing that this article will do for you is myth bust some of the mouth guard misconceptions that are going around. One of these myths is that mouth guards impede your speech and ability to breathe when playing sports. While some mouth guards (specifically the store-bought mouth guards) can cause some discomfort, if you get a custom mouth guard that fits your mouth correctly, it will not remove your ability to speak. A mouth guard that you can close your mouth with should not cause speech impediments.
Another misconception is that you cannot wear mouthguards with braces. The opposite is true; if you have dental implants, braces or crowns and play sports, mouth guards are particularly important because you have metal in your mouth that could cause abrasions on your gums if your mouth is hit.
Do You Need A Mouth Guard?
Here at Sunset Dental Care, we have both athletic guards and night guards available to you.
If you are needing a mouth guard, come in for a consultation to find the right fit for you. If you have any questions or concerns regarding mouth guards, contact us today.