If you regularly play any kind of contact sports, wearing a well-fitted mouth guard is imperative if you want to protect your teeth.
Mouth guards help to protect your pearly whites in the following ways:
- Mouth guards protect against knocked out teeth
- Mouth guards protect against soft tissue injuries
- Mouth guards protect against tooth displacement
- Mouth guards protect against tooth fractures
What type of mouth guard should I use?
There are two common types:
- over-the-counter (boil and bite) mouth guards; and
- professionally made, custom-fitted mouth guards.
The Australian Dental Association (ADA) strongly recommends wearing a custom-fitted mouth guard to ensure maximum protection, which your Smile Solutions dentist can fit you for.
What are the differences between the two types of mouth guards?
Custom-fitted mouth guards
Custom-fitted mouth guards are made by your dentist, who takes an impression and creates a plaster model of your teeth. This procedure of custom-fitting allows your dentist to accurately assess your mouth and provide the best fitting mouth guard that is most appropriate for you.
Custom-fitted mouth guards provide a better and more comfortable fit than over-the-counter varieties, and will also ensure that it won’t shift around, fall out or restrict your breathing.
Over-the-counter mouth guards
Over-the-counter mouth guards are far less effective than custom-fitted mouth guards. This is due to the fact that they are stock mouth guards that do not require fitting; instead, they are simply placed in hot water and then self-fitted by biting into the mould. This creates an imperfect fit.
How should I look after my mouth guard?
- Always rinse your mouth guard in cold water after use and occasionally rinse it in mouthwash;
- Store in a rigid plastic container;
- Keep out of direct sunlight as mouth guards can change shape in high temperatures;
- Have your mouth guard assessed by your dentist at your regular dental check-up; and
- Should your mouth guard sustain damage in any way be sure to replace it.