With so many mouth and head injuries during contact sports, there has been a lot of discussion on whether or not athletes should be wearing mouth guards – regardless of whether or not the activity has physical contact. Most believe they are designed to help protect your teeth from getting knocked out, but they actually also serve the purpose of decreasing your chances of getting a concussion.
There are three types of mouth guards:
1. Generic Mouth Guard – These are the worse type of mouth guards as they come ready to wear, are inexpensive, and have no customization. They are like to fit improperly, be uncomfortable, and may make breathing more challenging.
2. Boil & Bite – This thermoplastic mouthguard requires the buyer to soak in hot water and then bite down on the guard so that it forms to the teeth. These mouth guards can be purchased at most sporting stores.
3. Custom – This is the best type of mouthguard for athletes. Having a dental professional make and fit a mouthguard custom to your teeth and bit provides the most protection and comfort. It is also the most expensive option.
According to the experts, wearing a mouthguard not only will help protect your teeth and your brain (from concussions during collisions), but it will also help you perform at a higher level.
Night guards are commonly used for people that grind their teeth at night and/or experience headaches and migraines during the day. Grinding can cause damaged teeth, broken fillings, headaches, tooth sensitivity, and TMJ or bite issues. TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint. The TMJ and surrounding muscles are what connects your jaw to the upper part of your face. When the TMJ gets inflamed it is known as TMJ disorder. This disorder can can cause pain in the face, jaw and ears, chewing discomfort and difficulty, painful jaw clicks, headaches, and challenges opening and closing the mouth. There are many ideas on how to treat TMJ disorder ranging from over the counter pain killers to reconstructive jaw surgery. However, one of the best ways to prevent TMJ alltogether, is to wear a night guard to prevent teeth grinding.
If you are experiencing the above symptoms and think you might be grinding your teeth at night, talk to your dentist about wearing night guard when you sleep. If you don’t have one, Vancouver cosmetic dentists can be found and booked online on Connect the Doc!