Mouthguards are a general dentistry service that benefits patients who play contact sports. Sports like soccer, baseball, softball, volleyball, skateboarding, martial arts, hockey, or lacrosse require mouth guards. The American Dental Association estimates that sports mouthguards can prevent over 200,000 injuries. Protect chipped or cracked teeth by wearing a custom-fit and comfortable mouthguard.
Dr. Joseph A. Catanzano III, DDS provides patients with custom sports mouthguards in Washington, D.C. Dr. Catanzano and his team are dedicated to giving patients options designed with comfort and functionality.
Benefits of Mouthguards
There are many benefits that a custom sports mouthguard can offer a patient. Mouthguards:
- Minimize the risk of bruising and injury to the soft tissues in the mouth
- Reduce the chance of contact sports-related concussions
- Protect the lower jaw from trauma
- Reduce stress on the neck
- Help minimize the risk of chipped and damaged teeth
- Reduce the risk of knocked-out teeth
- Allow the wearer to speak clearly
If you play sports and need a mouthguard, call 202-315-2188. The team at Foxhall Smiles will be happy to create a mouthguard that protects your teeth comfortably and effectively.
Treatment with Mouthguards
Creating a custom-designed mouthguard requires a few visits to our Washington, D.C. dental office. During your appointment, Dr. Catanzano will take molds of your teeth. Using these molds, the mouthguard will be fabricated in a lab. When it is complete, Dr. Catanzano will check the size and fit on your mouthguard to ensure it is secure.
Wearing a properly fitted mouthguard can reduce your risk of permanent injury to your teeth and jaw and even tooth loss. A preventative measure like a mouthguard saves money in the long run and can even reduce the chance of injury or concussion. Over-the-counter mouthguards that are not custom-fit can easily fall out and interfere with breathing and speaking. They also may not be as comfortable as custom professional mouthguards.
Sports Mouthguards Vs. Nightguards
We can make custom options for both of these types of mouthguards. Sports mouthguards are worn while you’re playing sports, and nightguards are worn while you’re sleeping to protect your teeth when you’re grinding or clenching them. If you have one, you may be tempted to use it for both circumstances. But you should never use a mouthguard for anything but its specific purpose.
Sports mouthguards are made of bulky, light material. Their primary goal is to absorb shocks and trauma when you’re playing contact sports. It won’t last very long if you use it to protect your teeth from grinding. With the lighter material, your teeth will slowly work through the guard.
TMJ nightguards, on the other hand, are made of thin, harder plastic. It protects the teeth from damage and wear from grinding them at night. Using this guard while playing sports won’t provide much more protection than not having a mouthguard at all. The material can’t absorb shocks like a sports mouthguard can. You risk damaging both the guard and your teeth.
Mouthguard Cleaning and Care
Mouthguards only protect your teeth properly if they’re well taken care of. When you use the mouthguard, rinse it out with cool water afterward. It removes saliva and debris and stops buildup on your mouthguard. At least once daily, you should fully clean your mouthguard as well. Use a gentle cleaner or mild soap and a soft-bristled toothbrush to gently scrub the guard. Never clean your mouthguard with hot water, which can warp the material.
At least once a week, soak your mouthguard in a sterilizing solution for a deep clean. Some cleaners are specific for this purpose that won’t damage the material. After each cleaning, dry your mouthguard with a soft towel or leave it out to dry. Keeping the guard in a closed environment when it’s wet becomes a feeding ground for bacteria. They can be serious enough to make you severely ill and even deadly.
Keep your mouthguard in a ventilated carrying case when you aren’t wearing your mouthguard. It needs ventilation so bacteria don’t flock to the mouthguard. The case also lets you know exactly where it is at all times. It’s easy to misplace a small mouthguard. A case gives you a designated area to be confident about its location.
Take care not to damage the mouthguard. Never leave it in direct sunlight or extreme heat. Throwing and dropping it on hard surfaces can damage the material and reduce its effectiveness. Don’t keep it in the pockets of your clothes, either. Your body heat is too warm for the mouthguard. It’s also prone to scratches or other damage when it’s not worn or in its case.
Regularly inspect your mouthguard to see any cracks or other damage. If you have any concerns about the fit of the mouthguard or see noticeable wear and tear, bring it to the office so the dentist can inspect it. We want to ensure you have a functional device to protect your teeth properly.
Request a Consultation
Are you looking for a custom sports mouthguard? Protect your teeth from sports injuries. Call Foxhall Smiles for comfortable care today at 202-315-2188. You can also schedule an appointment with Dr. Catanzano on our website.