Answers on Mouthguards
What are athletic mouth protectors?
Athletic mouth protectors, or mouthguards, are made of soft plastic. You can get preformed or "boil-to-fit" Mouthguards in many sports stores. You can also get custom-fit and adapted by a professional such as your pediatric dentist to fit comfortably to the shape of the upper teeth. Your child should be required to wear mouth protectors in all physical sports activities. (Back to top)
Why are Mouthguards important?
Research have shown that many oral injuries are preventable and that most oral injuries occur in athletes who are not wearing mouth protection.
Mouthguards protect not just the teeth, but also the lips, cheeks, and tongue of your child. Mouthguards help protect children not just from injuries involving the teeth, but also from injuries such as head and neck injuries, concussions and jaw fractures.
Increasingly, organized sports are requiring participants to wear mouthguards to participate. Mouthguards should be considered essential sports equipment. (Back to top)
When should my child wear a mouthguard?
Your child should wear a mouthguard whenever your child is participating in an activity with a risk of falls or head contact. Such activities include (but are not limited to) football, baseball, basketball, soccer, hockey, skateboarding, and gymnastics. Parents usually think of football and hockey as the most dangerous sports and underestimate the risk their children may be under in other sports. Statistics show however that nearly half of all sports-related mouth injuries actually occur in basketball and baseball. (Back to top)
How do I choose a mouthguard for my child?
Choose a mouthguard that your child can wear comfortably. A mouthguard that is custom made to fit your child by a professional such as your pediatric dentist is best, but any mouthguard is better than no mouthguard. What you don't want is to have a mouthguard that feels bulky or interferes with speech, because such mouthguards will most likely be left in the locker room where they do no good. (Back to top)
Where can I get a mouthguard for my child?
Different types and brands vary in terms of comfort, protection, and cost. You can get preformed or "boil-to-fit" Mouthguards in many sports stores. You can also choose customized Mouthguards tailor-fit by a professional such as your pediatric dentist. While these generally cost a bit more than the in-store ones, they are also generally more comfortable and can be more effective in preventing injuries. (Back to top)