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Sports can be an important part of a healthy lifestyle. In any sport, players need to use the right equipment, and they need to have the right protective gear. As part of your body, your teeth need protecting, too! Anyone who is playing sports should use a mouthguard to protect their teeth. When thinking about sports like football, boxing or soccer, a mouthguard seems like an obvious precaution. But people involved in non-contact sports that might result in an injury to the mouth should wear them as well.

There are three basic kinds of mouthguards. The stock mouth protectors can be purchased at any sporting goods store and come ready to use. While they are convenient and inexpensive, most dentists don’t recommend using them since they often don’t offer much protection. “Boil and bite” mouthguards can also be purchased over the counter. They are placed in hot water, and then put in the mouth and shaped to the teeth. The safest of the three is the custom fit mouthguard. This type of mouthguard is designed for a specific person and is made in a dental office or lab. The dentist will take an impression of your teeth, which is used to create a custom mouthguard. This kind of mouthguard offers the most protection.

While mouthguards usually cover the upper teeth, guards for the lower teeth can be made as well. If you wear braces, a mouthguard is recommended since an injury to the face could damage your dental work.

Dr. Stephen Kwitnicki at Hilltop Dental in Union, New Jersey would like the chance to talk with you or your child about the importance of a properly fitted mouthguard. Make an appointment today by calling 908-516-2906 before your sports season starts.