A mouth guard might be one of the most overlooked pieces of equipment there is in the dental world. And they should not be! Not only can they help with bruxism, but also for those who practice rough sports. A mouth guard can save your teeth from damage, keeping your healthy smile intact.
As such, we hope that you consider getting yourself one if you suffer from clenching your teeth as you sleep, or if you practice sports that might require you to wear one. You know what they say, it is better safe than sorry!
A mouth guard is made of a durable material, yet flexible to a degree that fits over the upper teeth. They all have a basic U-shape in order to fit, of course. Usually attached to the upper teeth. There are different types:
- Stock mouth protectors, the ones you usually find in sport shops. These are not custom fitted at all so they can prove a bit difficult to wear. Since they are made ready to be worn, little can be done in order to adjust them.
- Boil and bite mouth guards offer a bit more of freedom. These are put in hot water in order to make them easier to adjust due their thermoplastic material, then placed in your mouth and fitted as desired.
- Custom-fitted mouth guards are the ones issued through a dental office or professional laboratory. As the name implies, they are custom fitted because they are made from an imprint of your mouth. Out of the three it is the more expensive, yet comfortable option.
Importance of wearing them
Properly using a mouth guard greatly protects your teeth from blows and hits. Either from balls, people, or even from your own teeth clashing. As such, it is mandatory they are used during sports. Especially for kids who are very likely to fall or do a wrong move.
And well, mouth guards themselves have really great benefits. By shielding your teeth from damage, you are protecting them from chipping, getting knocked off, as well as biting your own tongue as a result of a blow.
Also, they have a use outside sports, which is to protect you against bruxism while sleeping. It is not uncommon for people to grind their teeth as they sleep, which can lead to chips and cracks in the enamel. To avoid this, our dentists in Los Algodones recommend a mouth guard.
Do I need a mouth guard?
This is a rather simple question. If you practice sports such as soccer, football, basketball, hockey, even snowboarding, you should consider getting one.
Also, if you wear braces, and practice such sports, you are even more fit to wear one! Braces are very likely to get damaged as a result of a blow or a fall.
To keep it as clean as it can be, we recommend rinsing your mouth before and after wearing it. That way it will be unlikely to get worse in time in terms of smell and appearance.
Make sure to use cool water together with soap in order to clean the mouth guard thoroughfully. You want to avoid giving it or giving you bad breath.
Store your mouth guard in a perforated container. It is important there’s air circulation, or else it will be the perfect germ container.
Keep it away from hot temperatures, as well as check for its overall status. Mouth guards are bound to tear and get holes over time, and it is best to know when it is time to replace them before it is too late.
As an extra tip, you can take it to the dentist with you and have them check it for you. They work with them and know their way around.