Mouth guards can protect your jaw from damage caused by clenching your jaw and grinding your teeth in your sleep due to sleep bruxism. They can also protect your teeth from the risk of injury while playing contact sports.
Yes, you can buy mouthguards over the counter, or even make your own with a boil-in-a-bag kit purchased at a sporting goods store. But you shouldn’t. Stock generic mouthguards are designed to fit as many people as possible, but ultimately don’t fit any one well or well enough to protect your teeth from harm.
How mouth guards are made
To create a mouthguard that will effectively protect your teeth from the particular harm they may face, your dentist will begin by taking impressions of your teeth. The putty used to form the molds will precisely form to each gap and ridge of your teeth. Those moulds will be sent to a dental laboratory where the technicians will create a customized mouth guard to fit over your teeth. Most commonly, mouthguards are worn over just your top jaw, but they can be made and fit for your lower teeth depending on the recommendations of your dental clinic in Prince Albert.
Mouthguards are made of specialized thermoplastic materials developed to maintain their precise shape far beyond the ability of over-the-counter and boil-in-a-bag options. The inherent durability of a thermoplastic mouthguard is boosted by their custom design. Because they fit snugly against and around each tooth in your jaw, they don’t slide around.
Every mouthguard from a dental clinic in Prince Albert is a custom creation. But even those customized units can be further tailored to your specific needs. For example, the thickness of the material protecting your teeth can be adjusted to protect the biting surface from the highest pressures exerted by people who grind or clench their teeth and jaws particularly powerfully while sleeping. Those tweaks can protect your teeth and even reduce the pressure placed on your jaw which can, unless addressed, lead to painful symptoms throughout your head, face, and neck.
How long mouth guards last
Durable as mouth guards in Prince Albert are, they don’t last forever. Their lifespan will vary depending on the wear and tear they’re exposed to. They’ll certainly last longer than the more fragile store-bought options but, as a general rule, should be replaced every few years. If a child whose teeth and jaw are still developing is wearing the mouthguard, it’ll need to be replaced more frequently to ensure the guard is fitting properly for her teeth and jaw as they grow and change shape.
The best way to make sure your custom mouthguard is still fitting properly is to take it with you to each dentist appointment. Your dentist will take a look at the mouthguard in and out of your mouth, and make sure that it is providing the precise protection you need.
If you or your children participate in sports or activities with a risk of collision, every tooth in each jaw is at risk of injury. Sports-related tooth injuries can be painful, serious, and cause ongoing complications. Thankfully, custom mouth guards in Prince Albert can reduce those risks and make those games and matches safer and more fun for all — parents and kids alike. Likewise, if you experience the effects of sleep bruxism in your teeth, jaw, face, and neck, a custom mouth guard may provide significant relief from the pain of those muscle aches, jaw pain, and headaches. The first step to safety and release is contacting a dental clinic in Prince Albert to ask if they can help fit you with a custom mouth guard.