Mouth guards are pieces of plastic that fit between the upper and lower teeth. Use of a mouth guard can prevent dental and jaw injury during sports. Dental injury may lead to misalignment of the teeth. Dental injuries are easily prevented. It has been suggested that a properly fitted custom mouthguard may reduce the rate of concussion as well as dental injuries. Although some amateur sports, such as football, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse, and boxing, require the use of mouth guards, dentists recommend mouth guard use in any sport that may cause dental injury.
The National Youth Sports Foundation for Safety reports dental injuries as the most common type of orofacial injury sustained during sports participation. They contend that an athlete is 60 times more likely to sustain damage to the teeth when not wearing a protective mouthguard. Often times these injuries will result in permanent damage to oral structures which require medical intervention.
Custom-made mouth guards are individually designed and made in your dentist’s office or a professional dental laboratory. Not surprisingly, they are likely to provide the most comfortable fit and best protection. Your dentist makes an impression of your teeth and then constructs the mouth guard over a model of them.
It is important to remember damaged teeth do not grow back. Protect that perfect smile – wear a mouthguard.