Do you need to wear a mouthguard when playing sports? Pretty much any dentist would answer yes! All sports, be they high-contact or even no-contact, can put your at risk for broken teeth, cut lips, fractured jaw and other kinds of physical trauma; in fact, according the American Dental Association, almost a third of all dental injuries are related to sports in some way. That said, it’s also been found that athletes who wear mouthguards are 60 times less likely to damage their teeth. If that’s not enough, here are 4 more reasons to ask your dentist for a custom mouthguard.
1. A Good, Comfortable Fit
You can get a pre-formed mouthguard at a sporting goods store, but there’s a good chance it won’t fit properly. Teeth, jaws and mouths all come in different shapes and sizes, so “one size fits all” definitely does not apply to oral appliances. A custom mouthguard is made using impressions taking of your mouth; all the little nooks and crannies are taken into account, so you can be assured that the final appliance will be the right size to protect your teeth while letting you talk and breathe easily.
A comfortable mouthguard is especially important if you’re getting it for your child. That way, there’s less of a chance they’ll take it out during their practice or “forget” to wear it because of the pain. As a bonus, a custom mouthguard will take any already-present dental work into account, so they can be made to fit over braces without damaging them.
2. Best Protection Available
A mouthguard works by absorbing the impact of a physical blow and redistributing it so that less damage is done to the teeth and jaws. A poorly fitted mouthguard won’t do this job as effectively; in fact, in some cases it could actually cause more damage! Only a mouthguard that’s been properly fitted can give you the full protection that you need.
3. Correct Thickness
The type of activity you’re participating in will affect the kind of mouthguard you get. An appliance made for boxing or football will need to be relatively thick, but for sports like tennis where there’s less of a risk for severe impact, a thinner guard can be used. Your dentist will take your individual needs into account.
4. Save Money in the Long Run
While a custom mouthguard seems more costly on paper, in the long run they’ll prevent more injuries than pre-formed guards. That means there’s less of a chance that you’ll need to pay for complex surgery or restorative dental work such as porcelain veneers.
If you or someone you love has been playing sports without a custom mouthguard, don’t take any more chances than you already have; call your dentist in Arlington Heights right away for a consultation!
About the Practice
At Westgate Dental Care, our five dentists encourage all kinds of patients in Arlington Heights – from those with dental anxiety to those embarrassed about the state of their oral health – to get the care they need in a safe, relaxing, lecture-free environment. To ask about custom mouthguards and other kinds of preventive care, visit their website or call (847) 577-7171.