Do I need a custom sports mouthguard?

Did you know that almost half of all sporting injuries are dental-related? Some of the most common sporting injuries are chipped, broken, fractured or partial dislocation of tooth. Given the high incidence rate of dental injuries in everyday sports, it’s not far-fetched to make a customised dental mouthguard must-have protective gear for all forms of contact and adrenaline sports. Besides the obvious benefits of protecting athletes from cracking or chipping teeth, biting the tongue, and concussions, the latest mouthguard technology can even help to enhance training and competitiveness.

Of course, it can also save a trip to the dentist and help avoid potentially expensive and painful treatments.

First of all, it should be said that custom mouth guards do not only benefit those who play sports. Many non-athletic individuals use it for activities that may cause severe trauma on their teeth and gums (like grinding and clenching) or where physical collisions may occur.

There are different types of dental mouthguards on the market, varying in terms of cost and effectiveness.

“Boil and bite” mouth guards, that require being immersed into boiling water before placement in the athlete’s mouth or ready-made mouthguards available over the counter, although cheaper options, are generally not recommended by dentists, not least because they are not effective and uncomfortable to wear. Moreover, these two options do not conform as well to the teeth and mucosa, as such, are less effective in terms of absorbing and distributing the impact of the trauma.

It should be emphasized that the Australian Dental Association recommends only custom-fitted versions. Custom-made mouthguards are designed to conform exactly to your teeth structure, and are moulded and fitted at the dentist’s office.

Custom mouthguards are not only comfortable to wear, but also provide the greatest level of protection for your teeth. Their ability to absorb the shock upon receiving a blow or impact to the face is critical to the prevention of the most common sporting injuries including broken or chipped teeth, tooth loss, internal damage within the tooth, soft tissue injuries or even a broken jaw.

The shock absorbency of custom-fitted types relates directly to their exact fit for the athlete’s mouth structure. Using impressions taken of your teeth and plaster models to derive an accurate assessment of your dental cavity, dentists are able to custom produce a mouthguard with the best size, fit, thickness and coverage suited to each individual. Custom mouthguards allow you to talk comfortably, do not restrict breathing and are not easily dislodged.

Another rarely discussed benefit of sporting mouthguards is their ability to increase oxygen intake during physical activity. Compared to other mouthpieces that only provide protection to the teeth and tongue, today’s custom mouthguard design opens up airways, which greatly improves oxygenation of the body. As an athlete, you would know that improved delivery of oxygen to the body’s muscles increases endurance.

At Molonglo Dental Surgery, our custom mouth guards are moulded only after a dentist has evaluated and precisely measured your teeth structure. While providing the best protection to your teeth and gums, we want to make sure that these appliances do not sacrifice your oxygen intake, cause discomfort or hinder proper breathing.

For more information on Custom Mouthguards, book an appointment with our Friendly Dentist in Molonglo Valley. Contact Molonglo Dental Surgery at 02 6287 1222.

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