In sporting activities, there is a great need to protect your smile. Anyone who participates in a sport that carries a significant risk of injury to teeth, lips, cheek, and tongue, should wear a mouth protector. This includes a wide range of sports like football, hockey, basketball, baseball, gymnastics, and volleyball.
A properly fitted mouth protector will stay in place while you are wearing it, making it easy for you to talk and breathe.
There are three types of mouth protectors:
Stock mouth protectors are inexpensive and come pre-formed, ready to wear. Unfortunately, they often don’t fit very well. They can be bulky and can make breathing and talking difficult.
- Boil and bite
Boil and bite mouth protectors can be purchased at many sporting goods stores and may offer a better fit than stock mouth protectors. They should be softened in water, then inserted and allowed to adapt to the shape of your mouth. It is extremely important to follow the manufacturer’s directions in order not to end up with a poor-fitting mouth protector.
Custom-fitted mouth protectors are made by your dentist for you personally. They are more expensive than the other versions, but because they are customized they can offer a better fit than anything you can buy off the shelf. They are also designed to suit the needs of the individual athlete, with various thickness indicated for different sports.