Health Blog
Make sure you have a mouth guard in place if you are playing a contact sport!

Athletic Mouth Guards are a Must

Spring is often when many sports activities ramp up, youth and adult. Most sports have some sort of gear or equipment required to participate. All contact sports should mandate mouth guards in their necessary equipment requirements. Protecting your mouth from hard hits from a ball or a collision with another player is essential. Mouth guards typically cover the top row of teeth, offering protection for any type of blow to that area. In addition, a mouth guard can shield the lips, tongue, and cheeks from damage. They can also reduce the chance of concussion and protect the jaw joints against injury. The prospect of simply reducing the amount of damage caused by a potential hit to the mouth makes a mouth guard well worth the cost.

What you need to know about Mouth Guards

Whenever a player enters a field to play a contact sport, they should have a mouth guard in place. Many leagues these days, especially youth leagues, require them. Types of mouth guards range in quality and price, and each family should determine what works best for them. Some are pre-formed and ready to wear right out of the package. Others require a quick dunk in boiling water to form to the individual’s bite. And custom-made mouth guards can be created by your dentist. There are a wide a variety of options, colors and looks at your local sporting goods store. Take a moment to read through the information on the box. Many offer a dental warranty. Be sure to follow the instructions carefully to ensure proper fit and function. Keeping a backup mouth guard on hand is smart, so you are always prepared.

Mouth Guard CareMake sure you have a mouth guard in place if you are playing a contact sport!

Taking care of your athletic mouth guard and replacing it when necessary is just as important as a proper fit. Very young athletes may need their parents to check their mouth guards frequently. After use, an athletic mouth guard should be washed. Rinsing it with water and brushing it with a toothbrush and toothpaste is an excellent way to keep it clean. After use, the mouth guard should be allowed to dry. Keeping it in a warm, moist environment can encourage bacterial growth. Many come with a mouth guard case which will keep it safe and allow it to dry through air vents.

Mouth guards used for athletics do not last forever. Periodically checking your mouth guard is critical. Should it become worn, chewed or misshaped, it’s time to replace. Keeping a backup stash of mouth guards on hand is smart, so you are always prepared.

Playing sports is a wonderful activity, but accidents happen. Keeping your mouth, teeth and jaw safe with an athletic mouth guard is important. Mouth guards can also assist people in other ways such as late night teeth grinding or jaw clenching. Talking with your dentist about solutions for your dental health just might offer the solution you need. The entire team at Foundations of Health Dental Care in St. Joseph, MO is rooting for your sports team and hoping you make the wise choice of investing in an athletic mouth guard.