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Give your brace a sporting chance

posted 15/04/2016

Sport may be entertaining to watch and exhilarating to play, but it’s not all fun and games, it can also be a major cause of dental damage. So if you, or your child, take part in fast and furious contact sports it makes sense to wear a mouthguard. In fact schools and sports clubs often insist that players are fully kitted out with this essential tooth protector before they even step a boot clad foot on the playing field.

Mouthguards help to protect your teeth from breakage, root damage or even having a tooth completely knocked out, but a normal mouthguard won’t fully protect teeth from damage if you are having them straightened with a fixed brace. This isn’t a problem if you have a nifty removable brace as you can whip this out while you are indulging in sporty rough and tumble and just use a normal mouthguard to protect your pearly whites.

Even if you wear braces that are firmly fixed and there to stay (at least for a few months), you can still get active and take part in all kinds of all-action sports such as football, rugby, martial arts and hockey. You will just need a specially designed orthodontic mouthguard that will fit over the brace to stop it cutting the soft tissues of the mouth, prevent dental injuries and protect the delicate brace itself. Unlike normal mouthguards, made from thermoplastic and heated to fit the teeth, the orthodontic ones are produced from high grade silicone so they can more easily adjust to the changes that will occur during the straightening process.

So if you should find yourself getting up close and personal with a fast moving ball or an especially sharp elbow, you can rest assured your teeth, lips, gums and brace will be suitably protected and you can get on with your game.

Keep it clean

To keep your mouthguard in tip top condition, rinse it with cold water before and after use or clean with your tooth brush. Every so often give it a thorough wash with cool soapy water but remember to rinse it thoroughly – you don’t want to be frothing at the mouth! When not in use, keep it safe in a protective container and stash it with your sports kit so it’s always on hand when you want to show off your sporting prowess. Finally, to keep it in great shape, don’t expose your mouthguard to high temperatures, hot water, hot surfaces or direct sunlight.

Check it out

Your mouthguard won’t be a permanent fixture, so it’s important to check it regularly for signs of wear and tear. During your orthodontic treatment your teeth will be moving all the time, so it is particularly important to make sure your mouthguard is still fitting properly and providing effective protection. And remember when your braces are removed you will need a new mouthguard to keep your beautifully lined up teeth protected while you play.

So don’t get lazy, get lively – just be sure to keep your brace nice and safe while you do.