Autumn school term is upon us and so are contact sports! During Autumn and Winter term your children will be participating in contact sports such as hockey and rugby, which are a great way to exercise. However, without the correct protective gear, they can pose a danger to your child’s teeth. Wearing a custom made mouth guard whilst participating in these sports, decreases their risk of teeth and jaw related injuries by 45%.
Other sports that require a mouth guard are:
- Martial arts.
Why does my child need a mouth guard for sports?
Mouth guards are vital in protecting children from serious injury to the mouth, jaw, lips and soft tissues whilst playing contact sports or those that involve a hard stick or hard ball.
How are orthodontic mouth guards created?
At Park Lane we scan your child’s teeth for a accurate recording of the teeth (more comfortable than the old fashioned moulds), which is then sent off to a specialist orthodontic laboratory where the technicians 3D print the scan and make the mouth guard. There’s a fantastic range of colours available and different thickness to tailor make the guard for the sports your child plays.
Orthodontic mouthguards over shop-bought mouthguards
Shop-bought ‘boil and bite’ mouth guards are minimally protective against high-impact contact during sports, as they are not made to accurately fit your child’s mouth. They are often too thin or soft/squashy to provide good protection from injury. They can be a poor fit even if they are “boil and bite” type and can be uncomfortable to wear by your child. It is also may be necessary to re-mould a boil and bite guard every time it is worn to ensure the best fit.
Ideally a mouth guard should also extend to cover part of the jaw beyond the teeth, should we reasonably firm and not “squashable” so it transfers the energy of the injury to the jaw bones (that are much stronger) and minimises the impact. This can only be provided by a well fitting sports guard.
Looking after your child’s mouth guard
- Ensure your child does not expose their mouth guard to high temperatures, as this will change its shape.
- Keep the mouth guard away from hot surfaces for the same reasons as the above – this will affect the protection it can offer.
- Keep the mouth guard stored away in a protective container – this will stop it collecting debris and bacteria.
If your child’s teeth have not finished growing, the mouthguard will need to be replaced regularly. If it is not replaced, the mouth guard will act as a shop-bought version that does not protect your child’s specific tooth structure. If cared for properly, an orthodontic mouthguard should last up to 2 years.
If you would like further information about custom mouthguards at Park Lane, please do not hesitate to contact us.