Athletic Mouthguards

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Dental Mouthguards

Protect Your Athlete With Dental Mouthguards

Athletic activities are a great way to lead a healthy lifestyle. Playing in organized sports such as basketball, baseball, football, and soccer keeps young people and adults on a healthy track. As good as sports are for the health and emotional development of a young athlete, it’s also important to realize there are some physical risks involved. That’s why if you or your child is involved with sports, you should consider visiting Dr. Joe D. Arbutante, your Spring Lake dentist, and learning about athletic mouthguards.

What Is a Mouthguard?

A mouthguard is a protective device designed to fit over the teeth and absorb impact should some force come in contact with the wearer’s mouth, which protects the teeth and mouth from damage. The American Dental Association (ADA) has listed more than two dozen different sporting activities as potential dental injury causes in adults. Equestrian sports, skiing, surfing, and handball are just a few of such activities. Mouthguards should be an essential part of gear for any athlete at any age.

Types of Mouthguards

Athletes have a few different options to turn to when selecting a guard for their teeth and mouth. While a trip to the dentist is not necessarily required, it can be a good idea to get some advice from a dental professional before selecting a guard. The different types athletes are likely to come across include:

Athletic mouthguards.
  • Off-the-Shelf – These guards can generally be found at most athletic stores. They come pre-molded in a standard small, medium, or large size. There is no special preparation involved with their use. Simply pop it in the mouth and play.
  • Boil-and-Bite – These types of guards are slightly more customized. Place the device in a pot of boiling water for the specified amount of time. Once ready, place the guard in your mouth and bite down hard for the indicated length of time. The heat softens the material to mold to the shape of the teeth and tongue. The amount of coverage and effectiveness varies.
  • Custom – Customized guards are likely to be the most expensive, but they also provide the best fit and offer the perfect amount of protection because they are built to your specifications. A mold is taken of the teeth in order to build the guard. These types tend to be the most comfortable.

Benefits

Athletic mouthguards only work when worn, so it is important for athletes to actually use them while practicing or competing. In basketball, baseball, football, and soccer, balls are thrown, hit, and kicked all over the place. In many of these sports, physical contact with other players is also common. Mouthguards allow athletes to enjoy the game without stressing about chipping, cracking, or losing a tooth from a stray elbow or an errant throw. While some people might hesitate at the cost of custom mouthguards, it is far better than the cost of dentistry to restore or replace a broken tooth through an emergency trip to the dentist.

Contact Dr. Arbutante Today

It’s important for youth and adults to remain active, and organized sports are a great way to stay in tip-top physical shape. Schedule a visit with Dr. Arbutante to learn more about athletic mouthguards for the athletes in your family. You can contact us at 616-842-0090, or schedule an appointment online.