What is an Athletic Mouth Guard?
The best athletic mouth guards (based on research evidence), are custom designed and made by a dental professional with the athlete's individual needs taken into account.
Custom mouth guards are made from exact and precise models of an individual's own teeth; are made of resilient and tear resistant materials ensuring a proper fit; are comfortable, easy to clean, and do not restrict breathing. A properly fitted mouth guard must be protective, comfortable, resilient, tear resistant, odorless, tasteless, not bulky and have excellent retention, fit, and sufficient thickness in critical areas.
Recent studies suggest that the use of a more accurate pressure “thermo-forming” machine for the fabrication of multiple layered or laboratory pressure laminated (layered) mouth guard, are preferable to the single layer vacuum mouthguards. Laminated guards should last for at least 2 years for an adult with normal use. Each athlete should be evaluated individually for thickness and design to promote comfort and sufficient protection. The thicker materials (3-4mm) are not bulky and uncomfortable, but are more effective in absorbing impact energy. The thinner materials show marked deformation at the site of impact.
How should a mouthguard be looked after?
- Rinse before and after each use or brush with a toothbrush and toothpaste;
- Clean the mouthguard after use in cold, soapy water or mouthwash and rinse thoroughly;
- Transport the mouthguard in a sturdy container that has vents;
- Make sure not to leave the mouthguard in the sun or in hot water;
- Check for wear and replace the mouthguard when necessary.
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