How Do I Use a Mouth Guard if I Have Braces?

May 1, 2018 0

If you’re an athlete or an avid sports enthusiast you probably know the dangers that go with your sport. Athletes stand the risk of getting an orofacial injury by a 33-56 percent margin.

If you play a contact sport, the chances of an injury are even greater. Sports and recreational activities account for about five million teeth getting knocked out each year, and this often results in long term need for surgery and maintenance.

But wait! Before you race to the store to buy a traditional boil and bite mouth guard, understand this. The boil and bite process will pull your orthodontic appliance apart and cause all kinds of damage, resulting in a lengthy, unplanned trip to the dentist. It’s doubtful you want that.

We provide our patients with a standard, one size fits all mouth guard when they go into treatment at no extra charge.  This mouth guard slips over your braces and can be trimmed down to fit better.  There are also some available with the strap that connects to a helmet cage for sports like football, hockey, and lacrosse.

Both the American Dental Association and the Academy for Sports Dentistry recommend a professionally, custom-made mouth guard people who participate in any contact sports, whether you wear braces or not.  Custom mouth guards match the exact structure of your individual mouth, making them the safest, most comfortable fitting mouth guard possible.

We do offer custom mouth guards made in our office, so when patients ask about it after their treatment, we can discuss it then.  Because of the nature of orthodontic work, teeth are moving and changing all the time. A custom-fit mouth guard can be constructed, but it will require adjustment over time.

Obviously, your braces are a big investment for your parents and for you. But beyond the cost and a mouth full of orthodontia, the reward is having a beautiful, winning smile, with straight teeth. Protecting your investment is important.

It’s vital that your mouth guard stays in place against your upper teeth without needing to bite down to keep it there. When a mouth guard does not fit correctly, there is no guarantee that it will be in place when impact occurs.

Even though you must allow room for both tooth movement and the brackets of your braces, your mouth guard still should fit tightly and securely against your upper teeth.

Your orthodontist can still make the needed adjustments during your orthodontic treatment without the need for a new mouth guard.

Take care of your investment in your straight teeth and confident smile. Contact us  today for recommendations on the best, custom-designed mouth guards. Protect that smile. You’ll be glad you did.

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