Sports guards, mouth guards, and mouth protectors are different names for the same thing: a device worn over your teeth that protects them from blows to the face and head. Mouth guards are an important piece of athletic equipment for anyone participating in a sport that involves falls, body contact or flying equipment. This includes football, basketball, baseball, soccer, hockey, skateboarding, gymnastics, mountain biking — any activity that might result in an injury to the mouth.
Mouth guards typically cover the upper teeth and are designed to protect against broken teeth, cut lips and other damage to your mouth. If you wear braces or other fixed dental appliances (such as a bridge) on your lower jaw, your dentist may suggest a mouth protector for these teeth as well.
Types of Mouth Guards
Loudoun Smile Center will help you pick the best resilient, tear-resistant and comfortable mouth guard for you. It should fit properly and not restrict your speech or breathing. Mouth guards should ideally be replaced after each season because they can wear down over time, making them less effective. Replacement is especially important for adolescents because their mouths continue to grow and teeth continue to develop into adulthood. Many athletes who play several sports have new mouth guards made when they go for their six-month dental checkup.
- Custom-made mouth guards — Individually designed and made in our office or our dental laboratory providing the most comfortable fit and best protection. We make an impression of your teeth and then construct the mouth guard over a model of them.
- Boil and bite mouth guards — A pre-formed mouth guard that can be altered by boiling the mouth guard in water, then biting into the warm plastic for a customized fit. You are able to purchase at sporting goods stores and may offer a better fit than stock mouth protectors.
- Stock mouth guards