Mouth guards are devices that are used to protect teeth from trauma that can occur during sports and grinding. There are three main types of mouth protectors that are commonly used.
Different types of mouth guards
1. Stock mouth protectors
These types of mouth guards can be purchased at local sporting goods and grocery stores. They tend to be cheap and come ready for use. Some might need to be submerged in hot water before being used for the first time, to soften the device so it can better fit the wearer's unique set of teeth.
However, since these are not customized for the wearer, they tend to make talking and breathing difficult. They also do not provide the same level of protection a person would get from a customized device.
2. Boil and bite mouth guard
These types of devices can be purchased online and in sporting goods stores. They fit better than stock devices and are made from a thermoplastic substance that softens when immersed in hot water. The wearer can then bite down on the device, making an imprint of their teeth on it. This ensures a more comfortable fit.
3. Custom mouth guards
Patients can also get mouth guards from their dentist. Customized devices provide a significantly better fit and an increased level of protection. The dentist takes an impression of the patient's mouth, and the dimensions are used to make the mouth guard using a special material.
Most mouth guards only cover the upper set of teeth, but there are specialized ones that cover both sets. People who wear braces or other dental prosthetics often need mouth protectors that cover both the top and bottom set of teeth. A good mouth protector should be durable, comfortable and easy to clean. It should not restrict the wearer's speech or breathing.
There are also special types of mouth guards that are made for people who grind their teeth. These are called bite splints or nocturnal bite plates. They are used to minimize the forces exerted on teeth when grinding.
Who are mouth protectors made for?
Mouth guards are designed to be used by people who play contact sports such as soccer, football, hockey, boxing, MMA, lacrosse and basketball. People who participate in non-contact sports can also benefit from using one.
For example, accidents do happen when engaged in non-contact sports like skateboarding, skiing, riding bikes or gymnastics. Wearing a mouth guard significantly reduces the odds of a person damaging their teeth if an accident occurs.
Children and adults who have a habit of grinding their teeth should consider getting a bite splint to alleviate the forces on their teeth while they sleep. This drastically improves the person's oral health over the course of their lives.
Ready to get a customized mouth guard that will protect your teeth when you are out having fun or grinding your teeth at night? Schedule a consultation with a dentist today.
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Are you considering getting a mouth guard in the Decatur area? Get more information about mouth guards at https://www.anthony-dental.com.
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