Almost 70 percent of the youth in Canada participate in organized sports. In most cases, some type of protective gear is either recommended or provided to individual players. An essential piece of gear for players of all ages is the custom-fit mouthguard. This protective gear should be worn during practice as well as all playtime for contact sports of all kinds as well as activities like skiing, surfing, and more.
Currently, more than 90 percent of amateur athletes wear off-the-shelf mouthguards purchased at a sporting goods store. This means that only 10 percent of amateur athletes and student athletes are fully protected with a custom-fit mouthguard.
A custom mouthguard is one that has been designed by a professional such as a dentist or athletic trainer. This appliance will meet the requirements for full protection, comfort, resiliency, minimal bulk, and more. Throughout the playing season, the mouthguard should remain tasteless and odourless, which is facilitated with proper materials. It should feel comfortable in the mouth and should not get in the way of swallowing or breathing normally. At the same time, the thickness of the mouthguard should provide adequate shock absorption to prevent injury should the lower jaw be forced upward.
The problem with the most common type of mouthguard
Currently, the most common mouthguard used by student athletes is the "boil and bite" guard. This appliance can be easily purchased in a commercial outlet or may even be provided by a sports league or coach. The idea of the boil and bite mouthguard seems simple enough. Purchase the item, boil thermoplastic material in water for a short time and then place the mouthguard over teeth and press. This action will form the mouthguard to teeth.
Not only can the boil and bite product feel too bulky in the mouth, but this type of mouthguard also provides only limited protection. Studies have shown that, due to limited size availability, the boil and bite mouthguard tends to leave teeth at the back of the mouth unprotected from impact injury. In order to protect teeth, the jaw, and the face and head, it is necessary to reach optimal thickness and extension within the mouthguard, something only possible with custom care.
Many players also rely on ready-to-wear mouthguards, which offer virtually no protection at all.
Did you know that approximately Five million teeth are lost each year in sports?
A dental injury can cost more than 20 times the price of a high quality Pro-Form mouthguard.
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Don't leave yours or your child's smile, jaw, and head vulnerable to injury during sports! Call sherway dentistry at 416.639.2546 today!