Athletic activities and contact sports increases the risk of cracked, fractured or knocked out teeth. The ADA estimates that cost to replace or repair these teeth is estimated at nearly $500 million annually. In many cases these injuries could have been prevented by wearing a mouth guard.
In the past many schools and athletic associations saw mouth guards as optional. As awareness has grown more places require athletes to wear mouth guards while participating in contact sports.
A stock mouth guard is your most inexpensive option. They are available at most sporting goods stores. Unfortunately they are designed to for a generic fit. Most athletes complain they can make it hard to breathe while rarely gives a truly firm fit.
Boil and bite mouth guards tend to cost a little bit more, but offer a tighter fit. They are made from a material that softens when soaked in boiling water. You bite down on the material and it firms up once it cools. Many athletes complain that they are bulky and interfere with breathing.
The most effective option for protecting your mouth and allowing for easy breathing is to have your dentist fit you for a custom mouth guard. These mouth guards are made from a thermoplastic material that matches your teeth and bite pattern. It is very durable and with proper care they can last for several years.
If you have questions about what type of mouth guard is right for you or you would like to be fitted for a custom mouth guard, please call us at 919-489-9171 to schedule an appointment.