With a new sports season coming up, players and parents of athletes across Australia are busy with all the preparations involved for the exciting months ahead. And this year, many of them are also asking: is it worth investing in a custom-fit sports mouthguard?
To answer that question, it pays to know that playing sports is a top cause of dental injuries among individuals under the age of 25 in Australia, statistics from the Department of Health shows.
If you play contact sports such as rugby, hockey and boxing, the risk of obtaining serious injury in the mouth is naturally greater. But even accidents that can happen during non-contact sports and individual active play (such as biking) can also result in trauma to the face and teeth.
As such, dentists and sports medicine experts highly recommend the use of mouthguards as the best protection for minimising dental injuries during sports activities.
A mouthguard is made up of a soft, rubber-like material usually created from plastics, resins, laminates and other materials. This device is placed inside the mouth and worn over the upper teeth row. A full mouthguard for both upper and lower teeth could also be prescribed, such as for people wearing braces.
A mouthguard custom-fitted by your dentist is flexible and comfortable to wear, but strong and specifically designed to cushion the impact during a collision. With such a structure, a custom sports mouthguard can effectively minimise injury to the teeth, jaw and soft tissues of the tongue and cheeks.
Your dentist may recommend using a mouthguard if you participate in both non-contact and incidental contact sports such as volleyball, netball and soccer. Those who engage in individual sports such as snow skiing, skateboarding and biking might also be advised to wear one.
Meanwhile, sports associations and athletic bodies usually make it mandatory to wear a mouthguard when playing high-contact sports such as boxing, wrestling, hockey and Australian football, both during practice and actual events.
Mouthguards used to come pre-formed or ready to wear. But thanks to advances in dental technology, custom-fit type of mouthguards are now becoming the preferred choice for the perfect fit and the ultimate protection they provide.
Having a 3D custom mouthguard fitted is a surprisingly easy process. Using a 3D camera, your dental team will scan your mouth and create a map of your teeth. This map will then be used to customise an athletic mouthguard, fabricated according to your teeth and mouth’s exact measurements. Once the device is ready, you only need to go to the dentist for one fitting session.
Such precision results in a snug fit, providing wearers the comfort and confidence they need to focus on their sports performance. Moreover, a custom-fit mouthguard aligns with the exact contours of your teeth, allowing it to provide an excellent level of protection in case of impact and exertion.
Take note that it takes an experienced dental team to fit, design and produce a mouthguard with a precise fit. To get started with getting a sports mouthguard using 3D scanning and 3D printing technologies, contact us today.