In many sports, high-speed collisions are an unavoidable part of the game. Unfortunately, many of these collisions can result in lacerations, fractured teeth, lost teeth, and concussions. Athletic mouthguards have been shown to be very effective in reducing or eliminating these painful and costly injuries. A proper athletic mouthguard, custom fitted by me and my staff, will offer athletes the best combination of comfort and proper protection.
The National Youth Sports Foundation for the Prevention of Athletic Injuries has reported that dental injuries are the most common type of orofacial injury sustained during the participation of sports. It is estimated by the American Dental Association that athletic mouthguards prevent approximately 200,000 injuries per year in high school and collegiate football alone!
Unfortunately, the word “mouthguard” is universal and generic, and includes a large range and variety of products for “over the counter” guards to professionally manufactured and custom fitted guards (made by us).
The stock mouthguards available at sporting goods stores are limited in sizes, and the least protective. They are usually bulky, uncomfortable, and interfere with speech and breathing. They can be removed from the package and immediately worn. This type is held in place by keeping the teeth closed down around it. It offers very little protection from concussions.
There are also “boil and bite” mouthguards. This is the most common on the market. These are also limited in sizes and often lack proper extensions and do not cover all of the back teeth. Many athletes will in turn cut and alter these due to the bulkiness. This type is also poor fitting and often times the athlete will bite through the mouthguard during forming and this increases their chance of injury, especially concussion from a blow to the chin. A certain thickness and extension are necessary for proper protection.
Custom-made mouthguards are made here at our office. An impression (mold) of your teeth is made, and then a specially fitted mouthguard is fabricated to fit precisely over your teeth. A uniform thickness is attained, therefore greatly increasing the comfort and protection. Recently, we have become authorized makers of the new Under Armor Performance Mouthwear. This is an entirely new category of performance mouthguards and mouthpieces designed for all athletes looking to get better in their chosen sport. While mouthguards offer protection, the UA Performance Mouthwear enhances performance! It works because of several factors. First, clenching your teeth together triggers the production and release of a cascade of hormones, including cortisol, the stress hormone. Mouthwear powered by ArmourBite Technology prevents teeth clenching and relieves pressure on the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). By preventing the excessive production of hormones, the body is able to unlock its full potential! There are several studies to back up the technology. For more information, check online at www.underarmour.com
If you are interested in a custom fitted mouthguard, or, better yet, are interested in increasing your athletic capabilities with the new UA Performance Mouthwear, please contact our office. These necessary parts of your athletic equipment are reasonably priced and should be worn for all sports. Please ask about team discounts as well!
Dr. Greg Pyle