In the past some schools and athletic associations treated mouth guards as optional equipment. Unfortunately participating in contact sports and other athletic activities increases the risk of cracked, fractured or knocked out teeth. In many cases these injuries could have been prevented by wearing a mouth guard.
In recent years schools and athletic associations have become more aware of the mouth guards ability to protect the face and teeth as well as the potential to limit concussions and other forms of traumatic brain injury. As a result mouth guards are being enforced as a required equipment for contact sport athletes.
Stock mouth guards are inexpensive and available at most sporting goods stores. Their generic fit means most athletes complain that make it hard to breathe while also fitting loosely in the mouth.
Boil and bite mouth guards offer a tighter fit. After it is warmed in boiling water, you bite down on the material and it firms up once it cools. Many athletes complain that they are bulky and interfere with breathing.
Your dentist, is the most effective option for protecting your mouth and maintaining easy breathing. These pieces are made from a thermoplastic material that matches your bite pattern. Some research has found that they even can help prevent concussions and certain types of brain injury.
If you have questions about what type of mouth guard is right for you or you would like to be fitted for a custom mouth guard, please call us at 301.540.8808 to schedule an appointment.