Safe teeth while you play sports
Every year in Australia there are thousands of children treated for dental injuries that could have been prevented by wearing a mouthguard
Children and adults are advised to wear mouthguards during training and playing all contact sports. These include football, basketball, soccer, hockey, boxing, martial arts and more. By wearing a mouthguard you are also protecting your lips, tongue, jaw and face. For the best protection from a mouthguard, you should purchase one from a dentist.
Commonly, there are three kinds of mouthguards:
- Stock: bought over-the-counter these come ready to wear. Unfortunately, they are often bulky and can make breathing difficult.
- Boil and bite: bought from sporting shops, boil and bite mouthguards are softened in water then placed in your mouth so it can adapt to the shape of your mouth.
- Custom-fitted: made by your dentist to suit you, custom-fitted mouthguards are slightly more expensive than the over-the-counter variety but are better for your teeth. Custom-fitted mouthguards are better because they provide more support than a stock or boil and bite mouthguard.
Why you should buy a mouthguard from a dentist
If you are looking to protect the health of your teeth, your jaws and your face, then you want a mouthguard fitted by a dentist. After all, who else is better qualified to look after your oral health? While stock as well as boil and bite mouthguards are okay, they don’t provide the same support as custom-fitted mouthguard. Additionally, you can bring your custom-fitted mouthguard back to the dentist so we can keep an eye on it. Because, after a time, you will need to replace the mouthguard. On average, you will need to replace your mouthguard once every twelve months. However, this does depend on how frequently you use your mouthguard, as well as whether or not your bite changes; or if adult teeth start to come through.
Keeping your mouthguard clean
Irrespective of the sort of mouthguard you choose to purchase, keeping a mouthguard clean and in good condition is simple. Rinse your mouthguard in cold water, gently dry it and then place it in a plastic container. If you leave your mouthguard in the sun or rinse it with hot water you run the risk of distorting the mouthguard, and rendering it useless.
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