Mouthguards: An Important Part of the Uniform
Speak Easy With Braces and Dental Appliances
When we're young, it's all about play time. But playing sports or being active never gets old. That's a good thing! The bad thing is all that activity can put your teeth at risk. That's why it's so important to protect your smile with a mouth guard. Mouth guards protect teeth from getting broken, chipped or, worse, knocked out. Certain mouthguards even help with snoring and TMJ. Supplied by your dentist, a dental mouth guard is ideal for all ages. With custom mouthguards, you can avoid all the pitfalls that come with the over-the-counter versions: poor fit and poor quality. Keep reading for your complete guide to mouth guards.
Q: What kind of mouth guard should I get for sports?
A: There are basically three types of mouth guards: stock, boil-and-bite and custom-fitted. Stock mouthguards are pre-formed, have little to no room for adjustments and provide little to no protection. A boil-and-bite mouth guard offers a better fit and some protection. Your best option would be a custom dental mouth guard for superior fit and protection.
Q: Can a dental mouth guard help with TMJ disorder?
A: If you're prone to grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw in your sleep, you could be waking up with chronic headaches, earaches and jaw pain. Wearing a dental mouth guard can help prevent grinding teeth while sleeping, but you'll need to practice some self-restraint during the day. Avoiding caffeine, alcohol and chewing gum as well as reducing stress may be necessary.
Q: I snore. Are there mouthguards for snoring?
A: It's estimated that about 50 percent of adults in the U.S. snore at least some of the time. While chronic snoring could indicate sleep apnea, a more serious disorder that disrupts breathing while you sleep, occasional snoring is more of a nuisance — especially to loved ones. Custom mouthguards can help in both cases (although severe sleep apnea might require a CPAP or other treatment). A custom dental mouth guard prevents your jaw and tongue from dropping back and blocking the airway, which is what causes the annoying snore. See your dentist to find out whether a snoring mouth guard is right for you.