A mouthguard is a small investment to protect one of your child’s most important assets—their smile! Any person who plays a sport where the ball or another person’s arm, elbow, foot, etc. can cause trauma to the mouth is a candidate for a mouthguard. This includes basketball, boxing, hockey, football, gymnastics, lacrosse, martial arts, racquetball, rugby, track and field, skateboarding, skiing and snowboarding, skydiving, soccer, surfing, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting, and wrestling. If your child has braces, we highly recommend a mouthguard to protect both your child’s mouth and the appliance.
The result of trauma when a child does not wear a mouthguard can be incredibly detrimental to your child’s oral health. We have seen patients’ permanent teeth chipped, damaged, displaced, or even fully knocked out without a mouthguard. Patients can also fracture the root of a permanent tooth, requiring extraction.
Types of Mouthguards
- Premade: Premade mouthguard are the least well-fitting and protective of all mouthguards. They are much better than nothing, but can be bulky and fall out regularly.
- Boil-and-bite: Under Armour® boil-and-bite mouthguard are a good option for patients who are still growing or losing/gaining teeth. These come in different sizes and can be boiled at home and molded for a better fit. We offer multiple sizes of these in our office.
- Custom mouthguards: For patients who want the best fit, comfort, and protection, we recommend a custom-fit mouthguard from our Chapel Hill dental office. It is typically the most comfortable and protective.
When you choose a mouthguard, be sure to pick one that is tear-resistant, comfortable and well fitted for your mouth, easy to keep clean, and does not prevent your child from breathing properly.
Mouthguards should be rinsed when removed from the mouth and stored in the provided container. They can be cleaned with a toothbrush (no toothpaste) or effervescent cleaner. Mouthguards should be replaced at the beginning of each new sports season. Bring your child’s mouthguard to each checkup at our Chapel Hill dental office so we can make sure it's still in good shape!