An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, and this is particularly true when it comes to mouthguards. While we often think of kids as needing mouthguards, adults who engage in contact sports or other activities that have a high risk of damage to the mouth should consider mouthguards as well. Your Coral Gables cosmetic dentist might ask you about some of these activities to determine how much risk you have.
Mouthguards come in three types: one-size-fits-most, boil-and-fit, and custom-fit. The one-size-fits most mouthguards are usually available from sporting good stores. They’re built in a standardized size and are usually made of a rather firm type of latex or rubber. They’re better than nothing, but they’re not a great choice because they don’t usually fit well. They can be uncomfortable, and when a patient has any type of dental or orthodontic work like braces or bridges, they can fit very poorly or not at al.
Sometimes patients are planning on implants, but they need dentures to help them out until their implants are finished. Our Coral Gables cosmetic dentist provides full or partial dentures in a variety of styles and options.
Boil-and-fit mouthguards are usually found in drugstores. They might be a little more expensive than the one-size-fits-most mouthguards, but they tend to fit better. These soft, flexible latex or silicone mouthguards are placed into boiling water to soften, then pressed on to the teeth to fit. This gives a more comfortable and customized fit than the one-size-fits-most guards, but they can fall apart more easily and they still might not fit properly over braces or bridges.
Finally, customized mouthguards are available from our Coral Gables cosmetic dentist. With these, your dentist makes an impression of your teeth (including any devices or braces) and has a mouthguard built from those custom impressions. These fit perfectly, are the most comfortable option, and are usually pretty long-lasting. They might be more expensive than the other options, but for a patient with dental work they might be the only one that fits right.
Our Coral Gables cosmetic dentists have learned from many years of experience that it’s far easier to protect the teeth than to replace them. Dental accidents cause thousands of cases of tooth loss each year, and mouthguards can go a long way to making your sport or activity safer.