Protect Your Pearly Whites with a Mouthguard


Protect Your Pearly Whites with a Mouthguard

Posted by James Cadigan in Dental Health 07 Oct 2016

The fall can be a great time to get back into playing sports and many people will spend quite a lot on equipment for their chosen sport, but will neglect to protect their teeth. This could prove to be a costly mistake, as a great many contact and non-contact sports carry the risk of a blow to the head. Wearing a well-fitting mouthguard could save you a lot of pain and money on restoring or in the worst case having to replace teeth.

Over-the-Counter or Custom-Made Mouthguards

It is possible to buy over-the-counter sports mouthguards quite cheaply, which may initially seem an economical choice, except these mouthguards don’t offer a great deal of protection and can be pretty uncomfortable to wear. Even so called ‘boil and bite’ mouthguards can be tricky to adapt to fit comfortably over your teeth and gums, and they may hinder breathing. As a result, they are far more likely to remain in your sports bag than in your mouth.

Custom-made mouthguards are much more comfortable to wear as they will fit exactly over your teeth and gums so you can breathe easily. They are also specially designed to offer maximum protection in the areas where you need it most as they can be thickened in critical areas to provide extra cushioning against any knocks and blows to your jaws.

What is the Procedure for a Custom-Made Mouthguard?

If you decide to have a mouthguard made for you, Dr. Cadigan will need to take an impression of your teeth. The impression is used to fabricate your mouthguard to Dr. Cadigan’s exact specifications and design. It can be fitted at your next appointment and will be ready to use.

Custom-fitted mouthguards are ideal for sports-mad adults and children. The fit of your mouthguard will need to be regularly checked and this is particularly important for children whose teeth and jaws are still developing. Although a child’s mouthguard may need replacing regularly to accommodate for this growth, it is still a good investment in their long-term dental health as otherwise they could face a lifetime of dental costs for dealing with childhood sporting injuries.

What to Do If You Knock Out a Tooth

If you do knock out a tooth, it is important to act quickly as sometimes it is possible to successfully reinsert the tooth, but only within the first half an hour to an hour after the accident. Retrieve the tooth holding it by its crown and wash off any dirt but leave any pieces of tissue intact on the tooth root. If you feel able, carefully reinsert the tooth ensuring it is facing the right way round and hold it in place with a clean finger. See an emergency dentist as soon as you can. If you can’t face reinserting the tooth, store it in a little milk or saline solution, or even saliva and bring it with you to your emergency dental appointment. If a child has knocked out a milk tooth then the tooth should not be reinserted, as it could damage the adult tooth underneath. It is still important to seek emergency dental care.

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