When Are Sports Mouth Guards Necessary?

The more active your kids are, the more at risk they are of accidents. Although you might think in terms of injuries such as sprains or even breaks, you might not imagine an injury that could affect their teeth, jaw, and face. Using sports mouth guards in Lakewood, CO can protect your child’s teeth not only from hits to the mouth but also to the head. Here we look at athletic mouth guards and when they are necessary.

Why Are Sports Mouth Guards Important?

Sports mouth guards in Lakewood, CO are a must because they are the only thing between your child and an elbow, fist, ball, or other things that can hit them in the face while playing sports. Also known as mouth protectors or sports guards, they are designed to help cushion a blow to the face or head. As a result, you reduce the risk for serious injuries, such as broken or displaced teeth or bruised or cut lips or tongue.

While researchers are still discovering the complete benefits of mouth guards, sports guards can also assist with head injuries by absorbing the impact’s shock. Blows to the head can lead to injuries of the mouth, teeth, tongue, and jaw due to the forceful impact. However, wearing a mouth guard protects your child’s teeth and soft mouth tissue.   

Different Types of Sports Guards

There are basically three types of sports mouth guards to choose from:

  1. Stock Sports Guards: These are found in drug stores and sporting goods stores. They provide some protection, but compared to the other two types, are not as effective. These have a generic fit, and your child bites down on the guard to hold it in place. As a result, they can’t speak, and it can also make it more difficult to breathe when they are active.
  2. Boil-And-Bite Sports Guards: These sports guards can be bought in the same place as stock guards, and also in some Lakewood, CO dental offices. This guard is customizable to your child’s teeth. Typically, you’ll place the guard in boiling water to melt its inside canal. Then, you’ll have your child bite down on the mold to shape it to his or her unique tooth formation. They are reasonably easy to use and affordable. And, as long as you follow the instructions, it should fit your child very well. However, it is still not as secure as the third option, especially for contact sports.
  3. Custom-Made Sports Guards: A custom-made sports guard in Lakewood is the ultimate mouth guard as it is completely customized at your Lakewood dentist office for an exact fit. The fit provides more stability and comfort. The material is superior to that of the boil and bite style so they last longer and provide a more dependable form of protection.

While some protection is better than none, custom-made sports guards are the better of the three types.

Caring for Sports Guards

Proper care for sports guards include:

  • Rinsing after use with warm water
  • Brushing the guard with mild antibacterial soap and a soft toothbrush with a good rinse
  • Deep cleaning with an over-the-counter denture cleaner once a week
  • Always keeping it in its case when not in use

Overall, your child should be wearing customized Lakewood sports mouth guards whenever they participate in collision and contact sports. This includes obvious sports such as boxing or football, but should also sports ranging from soccer to hockey and gymnastics to skateboarding.

If your kids are back in school sports and you’d like to protect their face and mouth, schedule an appointment with Dr. Elizabeth Turner to talk about the best sports guard options in Lakewood. 

To learn more about pediatric dental services in Lakewood, CO, visit this page here.

About the Author

Dr. Elizabeth Turner is a whole-health, family dentist in Lakewood, CO who provides general, restorative, and cosmetic dental care. She focuses on the mouth-body connection and helps her patients smile confidently, breathe clearer, and live healthier lives. 

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