Do You Need a Mouthguard?

Recently Celtics basketball star, Isaiah Thomas, suffered a nasty injury to his front teeth during a play. This made me think about dental injuries and what can be done to prevent them. While not every injury can be prevented, a mouth guard can minimize the damage.

There are three basic types of mouth guards:

•Mouth-formed mouth guards: These are often referred to as “boil and bite” guards. This type of mouth guard should not be used while undergoing orthodontic treatment because they can damage the braces and interfere with the tooth movement.

•Ready to wear mouth guards: This includes some mouth guards that are appropriate for wear with braces and some that are not.

•Custom mouth guards: These are made by your dentist for the best custom fit and are similar to those used by professional athletes.

When purchasing a mouth guard, look for a product that is free of sharp or jagged edges. An orthodontic mouth guard should be flexible enough on the inside to accommodate a changing smile. Mouth guards also come in many styles and price ranges.

So who needs a mouth guard?

The answer is anyone who plays a sport where there is a chance of physical contact. This includes the sports most of us think of like football, hockey, and lacrosse. It also includes sports like softball, baseball, soccer, wrestling and basketball. Finally, don’t forget to wear your mouth guard during practice. Accidents don’t just happen during the game.

Play well and play safe!

-Dr. Deborah Himelhoch

Dr. Deborah Himelhoch and the team at Smiles in Framingham are the experts when it comes to knowing whether or not her patients need a mouth guard and what type they should have. If you have questions about mouth guards, orthodontics or pediatric dentistry and live in or work near Framingham MA, Southborough MA, Wayland MA and Ashland MA contact Dr. Himelhoch of Smiles in Framingham at: 508-872-0555