Have you ever considered wearing a mouthguard? If you’re like many dental patients, you probably associate mouthguards with the safety gear that football players wear. If you’re not a football player yourself, you’ve probably never considered that you might need a mouthguard. But mouthguards can benefit other patients as well.
Football is a rough sport, but it’s not the only one that poses a danger to your mouth and teeth. The American Dental Association recommends mouthguards for athletes participating in a number of different sports.
Basketball, handball, racquetball, baseball, softball, and soccer, are all sports that carry the risk of getting hit in the mouth by a fast-moving projectile. Track, acrobatics, skiing, surfing, martial arts, skydiving, and track and field events all come with the risk of impacts or falls that could cause a mouth or tooth injury. If you participate in any sport where a mouth injury is possible, wearing a mouthguard can protect your teeth, tongue, and gums and potentially save you a lot of money in dental bills.
Nighttime Teeth Grinders
Do you ever wake up with a stiff, sore jaw or a headache? Are your teeth chipped or worn down? You may be grinding your teeth in your sleep. This is called bruxism, and it can damage your teeth, cause pain and difficulty speaking and chewing, and contribute to conditions like Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD).
While daytime teeth grinding might be a bad habit that you can overcome with willpower, there’s not much you can do to stop yourself from grinding your teeth in your sleep. Nighttime teeth grinding can be caused by many things, including stress or certain medications. A mouthguard designed for wearing while you sleep can protect your teeth from nighttime tooth grinding.
Your dentist can create a custom mouthguard that fits the precise size and shape of your mouth and is optimized for your needs, whether you’re an athlete or a person suffering from bruxism. Talk to us about whether you need a mouthguard at your next appointment.