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Well, mouth guards are interesting. I happen to work with the Ohio State University when I was in dental school. I was also the football team dentist and we were doing a lot of stuff about mouth guards. We discovered that you needed to have a piece of material between the upper and the lower teeth and you needed to have a piece of material between the cheeks and the teeth themselves. The thickness varied. The amount of bite registration that was involved varied on different people. There's been all sorts of groups that have said, 'Gee, if you go and put your jaw in a different position you'll get more strength and more stamina and so forth.'

Some of those theories worked, some of them didn't work. Basically when you're having orthodontics and you have braces on you don't want to do a boil type because then it changes all the time and it's fighting what you're doing orthodontically. I ask my patients to just get a generic one and don't boil it while they're in treatment. On the other hand when they're done with treatment to have a boil and bite one is not so bad because it acts as a retainer too while they're working on it.

I used to be involved iwith our local high school making mouth guards that quarterbacks and linebackers could wear so that they didn't have to take it out and make a call and then stick it back in type of a thing. We would do a custom made one and now they got all sorts of different colors. You can do team colors and so on and so forth. You can go nutso with the different variations on it but honestly if you have something between the tooth and the cheeks and between the teeth and the teeth, you're done.

Are you or your child involved in a contact sport? At Robert A. Eckelson, D.D.S., P.A., we want to help ensure the long-term dental and orthodontic health of your family. One way we can do this is by offering athletic mouthguards for patients of all ages. If you or your child regularly play a sport where injuries are common, please consider getting an athletic mouthguard to protect your smile.

Why are custom-fitted mouthguards better than store-bought guards?

If you have considered athletic mouthguards in the past, you may have thought about buying a stock mouthguard from your local sporting goods store. If you have bought one of these guards, you will have noticed that they often do not fit very well and are likely too loose or rub your gums in weird places. Our custom-fitted mouthguards solve many of these issues. There are actually three types of athletic mouthguards available, only one of which we offer here in our office:

  • Stock Mouthguards – Stock guards are available almost anywhere that sells sports equipment. These guards usually fit improperly, are uncomfortable, and can sometimes rub and cause pain. These guards are better than nothing, but not the best choice by any means.
  • Boil and Bite Mouthguards – These guards are designed to soften in boiling water, then to be bitten to create a form-fitting guard. These are also available at sporting goods stores. While these guards are a better-fitting option than stock guards, they still do not compare in comfort and strength to custom-fitted mouthguards.
  • Custom-Fitted Mouthguards – This is the best type of guard we offer here in our office. We can often create these guards in-office to fit your unique bite. These guards are comfortable to wear, fit snugly, and should not rub or cause pain. We believe this type of guard is the best option for protect your or your child’s teeth from a sports injury.

Why are athletic mouthguards particularly important if I wear braces?

While athletic mouthguards should be worn regardless of whether you are undergoing orthodontic care, they are especially important if you have braces. Our athletic mouthguards can be custom-designed to fit over your braces and protect them from damage during activity. Braces can make using stock mouthguards even more difficult to use due to finding a good fit. We can help you get the protection you need with our custom-fitted appliances.

How can I get more information?

To reach our office, please call us at (561) 391-6415. You can also send us a message using our online form. There are many, many resources on the Internet that can offer you more information on how and why to use athletic mouthguards for dental and orthodontic protection. However, to get additional information on your specific orthodontic situation and how we can fit a guard to your mouth, you will need to schedule a consultation with Dr. Eckelson. Dr. Eckelson will be able to examine your situation to determine what protection is necessary. During this visit, you will be able to ask as many questions as you would like about the process and the product. The good news is that this consultation is free! We offer free consultations so that our patients can get the information they need to make a sound decision about their care without financial stress or obligation.

To reach our office, please call us at (561) 391-6415. You can also send us a message using our online form. We will be happy to help you set up a date and time for your consultation that fits the needs of your schedule. We hope to hear from you soon!

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