If you play sports while having braces, it’s important to protect your teeth with a mouth guard. Sports-related impacts can break your braces, damage your teeth, and cause injury to your gums or lips.
A mouthguard shields your teeth from impact-related damage while also shielding the softer areas of your mouth from accidentally getting bitten or scratched. The American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) recommends wearing a mouthguard even if your sport doesn’t typically involve contact, such as with soccer and baseball.
Types of Mouthguards
There are three main types of mouthguards that you might see:
- Pre-made mouthguard: These mouthguards can be purchased at most sporting goods stores and even grocery stores. While wearing one of these is better than nothing, these mouthguards typically don’t fit very well and can even cause mouth damage on their own due to slipping around.
- Boil and bite mouthguard: This type of mouthguard is slightly more customizable than pre-made mouthguards, although they’re not as durable or as comfortable as having a custom mouthguard made by your orthodontist.
- Custom-made mouthguard: This is your best option if you want a mouthguard that will last a long time. Your orthodontist in The Woodlands, TX, can craft a mouthguard that fits perfectly in your mouth, reducing the risk that it will move around or fall out. The secure fit provides more protection for your teeth and braces.
Caring for Your Mouthguard
It’s important to keep your mouthguard in good shape so it can provide the most protection for your teeth. Make sure you clean it well after each use and pay attention attention to any wear or tear it might have. If your mouthguard breaks, it can’t shield your teeth from damage. You should replace your mouthguard if you grow out of it or if you notice that it no longer fits snugly in your mouth.
If you’d like to get a mouthguard for yourself or your child, give Dr. Pratt’s office in The Woodlands, TX, near Tomball and Magnolia, TX, a call at 281-367-0050 today!