What will my fellow dentists and dental specialists be looking for in the upcoming clash between the Denver Broncos and Carolina Panthers? No, not the number of sacks or end zone celebrations; not the half time show or the best commercials. It is mouth guards of course.
For decades, the mouth guard has proven its ability to protect against tooth fracture and lip lacerations on the field. Recent research now indicates this long-proven dental appliance can help prevent concussions and may even provide performance enhancing respiratory and VO2 max benefits. That’s one powerful little apparatus. You don’t have to be a professional athlete to use an athletic mouth guard. Children and adults alike gain from such protection.
Today’s mouth guards come in all shapes and sizes – from generic boil and bite vampire guards to the highly customized options from Under Armour, Shock Doctor or Gladiator, which are made from high quality impressions taken at home or with professional help from the dental office. Most traditional mouth guards are effective in safeguarding your teeth, however custom appliances are less bulky and fit better, offering a greater level of protection. Consider the investment you may have made in your smile or your children’s orthodontic care. Add in the fact that dental trauma is 60x more likely to occur in absence of a mouth guard, custom appliances start to make a lot of sense.
So as I enjoy this weekend’s big game, I encourage all of the athletes to take steps against injury with some extra protection on the gridiron.
For more information on ADA-approved mouth guards, visit: http://www.ada.org/en/member-center/oral-health-topics/mouthguards or consult with any member of our Amsterdam Dental Group team for custom fit appliance options.