Teeth can be at risk of damage due to grinding and clenching as well as sports-related injury. Braces on the teeth can damage the soft tissue of the lips and cheeks unless measures are taken to prevent this. Dental mouth guards protect the teeth and mouth from these dangers and are strongly suggested for both children and adults exposed to these risk factors.

  • Mouth Guard Types

There are three types of mouth guards available depending on your needs and preferences.

  • Custom-fitted

These are made specifically for the patient by the dental provider. While the cost more than other options, they have the best fit.

  • Stock

These are the most economical option and come ready to wear, but they sacrifice fit for convenience and economy.

  • Boil and bite

Boil and bite mouth guards can be found at most sporting goods and drug stores and fit better than stock guards. They are first softened in boiling water and then placed in the mouth to conform closely to the teeth.

  • Sports Guards

Sports guards are dental tooth protectors specially made to prevent sports-related injury. Those who participate in contact sports like football and hockey are obvious candidates for these mouth guards, but they can be recommended even for non-contact sports such as gymnastics and skating.

Mouth guards are particularly important for those who wear braces as any kind of blow to the face can harm the brackets or other fixed orthodontic apparatus.

  • Night Guards

Nighttime teeth grinding is a common disorder that can wear down and fracture the teeth, leading to increased tooth sensitivity, receding gums, and damage to dentures and other artificial teeth. Night guards protect the teeth from damage due to teeth grinding be creating a barrier between the upper and lower teeth.

Mouth guards reduce the likelihood of chipped and broken teeth, nerve damage, or even tooth loss. For those with braces, they serve as a block between the braces and the soft tissues of the cheeks, tongue, and lips. Talk to your dentist if you are interested in discussing the appropriate mouth guard for you or someone you know.