MON - FRI: 9AM - 6PM Sat: 9am - 3pm, Sun: CLOSED
(604) 559-9955 Fax: (604) 559-9964
611 East Broadway Vancouver, BC V5T 1X7
  /  Uncategorized   /  Protect Your Smile: Why Sport Guards are Essential for Athletes
sport guards

Sport guards, or mouthguards, are crucial for safeguarding athletes’ smiles during intense performances. These devices provide thorough coverage, protecting teeth, lips, and gums from potential dental injuries. With the right sport guard, athletes can play confidently without dental concerns, allowing them to focus on their game with assurance.

Types of dental injuries that can occur during sports

Sports activities can expose athletes to various risks, including dental injuries. The mouth is particularly vulnerable due to its exposed position, making it prone to blows or impacts. Here are some common types of dental injuries that can occur during sports:
  1. Broken Teeth: A direct hit to the mouth can cause teeth to break or fracture, affecting the smile’s appearance and causing discomfort and chewing difficulties.
  2. Knocked-Out Teeth: Impact-related incidents can lead to teeth being completely knocked out, resulting in long-term consequences such as difficulties in speaking, eating, and reduced self-confidence.
  3. Cuts to the Mouth: Sports activities involving physical contact can cause cuts or lacerations to the lips, cheeks, or tongue. These injuries can be painful and may require medical attention.

Types of sport guards

Sport guards serve as protective devices designed to cushion the teeth, lips, and gums during sports activities by absorbing and redistributing impact force, minimizing the risk of dental injuries. There are three main types of sport guards:
  1. Stock Mouthguards: These are pre-made and come in various sizes, offering some protection. However, their fit may not be optimal, affecting both comfort and effectiveness.
  2. Boil-and-Bite Mouthguards: Crafted from thermoplastic material, these mouthguards soften when heated. Athletes can customize the fit by placing the softened guard in their mouth, allowing it to adapt to their teeth’s shape.
  3. Custom-Fitted Mouthguards: Professionally made and offering the best fit and protection, these guards are created by dentists who take impressions of the athlete’s teeth. This results in a guard specifically tailored to their mouth.
Custom-fitted mouthguards are often recommended for high-impact sports or specific dental needs, while boil-and-bite options can be a more affordable choice for recreational athletes.

Benefits of wearing sport guards

Sport guards offer various benefits beyond tooth protection. Here are some advantages of incorporating them into your athletic routine:
  1. Dental Protection: Acting as a cushion, sport guards absorb and distribute impact force, reducing the risk of dental injuries to your teeth, lips, and gums.
  2. Jaw Protection: Sport guards not only safeguard your teeth but also help prevent jaw fractures or dislocations during high-impact activities.
  3. Concussion Prevention: Studies suggest a link between dental injuries and concussions. Sport guards act as shock absorbers during impacts, potentially reducing the risk and severity of concussions.
  4. Improved Performance: With oral protection confidence, you can focus on your game, performing at your best without concerns about potential dental injuries, providing a competitive advantage.
  5. Long-Term Cost Savings: Despite the initial investment, sport guards can save money in the long run by minimizing the risk of expensive dental treatments for injuries like broken or knocked-out teeth.

How to choose the right sport guard for your needs

Choosing the right sport guard is crucial for optimal protection and comfort. Consider the following factors when making your selection:
  1. Level of Protection: Assess the contact and impact involved in your sport to choose a guard that provides sufficient protection for specific risks.
  2. Fit and Comfort: Ensure a well-fitted guard for both protection and comfort. Custom-fitted guards offer precise fits, while boil-and-bite options strike a balance between affordability and fit.
  3. Material: Sport guards are typically made of EVA (Ethylene Vinyl Acetate) or polyurethane. EVA guards are flexible and comfortable, while polyurethane guards are more rigid and durable. Choose based on your preferences and needs.
  4. Breathing and Speech: Select a sport guard that allows for normal breathing and clear speech. Poorly designed or ill-fitting guards can impact these essential functions, affecting your performance.
  5. Dental Considerations: If you have braces, dental restorations, or specific dental needs, consult with your dentist to determine the most suitable type of sport guard.

Proper care and maintenance of sport guards

Ensuring the longevity and effectiveness of your sport guard requires proper care and maintenance. Follow these tips to keep your sport guard in optimal condition:
  1. Cleanliness: Rinse your sport guard with cold water before and after each use. Use a mild soap or toothpaste and a soft toothbrush to gently clean the guard, removing bacteria or debris. Avoid hot water, as it can distort the guard’s shape.
  2. Storage: Store your sport guard in a well-ventilated container when not in use to prevent bacterial growth. Avoid direct sunlight or extreme temperatures, as these can affect the material’s integrity.
  3. Regular Inspection: Check your sport guard regularly for signs of wear and tear. If you notice cracks, holes, or changes in shape, consider replacing the guard to maintain continued protection.
  4. Avoid Chewing: While designed for impacts, sport guards are not meant to be chewed on. Refrain from biting or chewing on your sport guard to prevent damage or deterioration.
  5. Regular Replacement: Follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for replacement, usually every 6-12 months or sooner if needed. Sport guards have a limited lifespan due to wear and tear.
By adhering to these care and maintenance practices, you can extend your sport guard’s lifespan and ensure optimal protection for your teeth and mouth.

Invest in your smile and overall oral health

Safeguarding your smile is crucial for athletes at every level, as dental injuries can impact not only oral health but also overall well-being and performance. Sport guards serve as a simple and effective solution to minimize the risk of dental injuries during sports activities. Whether opting for a custom-fitted mouthguard or a boil-and-bite option, the undeniable benefits include dental protection and enhanced performance, providing athletes with the confidence and peace of mind needed to excel in their sports. Don’t let dental injuries impede your athletic pursuits; invest in the right sport guard today for a protected and grateful smile! Call Mount Pleasant Dental Group at  (604) 559-9955 to book an appointment.
Post a Comment