What is a Mouthguard Used For?
Out of all sports equipment, it is the humble mouthguard that seems to carry the most controversy. Why? Because it is still not quite clear what sports you will need one. Of course, we all know that these were popular back in the day for protecting famous boxers and MMA fighters from ending up with fractured jaws.
Today, there is a whole new market related to specific mouthguard models. There are custom mouthguards which are most costly, and boil-and-bite ones which are less expensive but don’t have the same durability as custom models. Bearing this in mind, choosing the perfect one shouldn’t take you more than a bit of time for some proper research. But what is a mouthguard used for in the first place?
As with buying any other product, it is always good to know the purpose of it in order to decide on whether it is a worthwhile investment or not. Talking about mouthguards, unless you are a professional athlete, you probably don’t need one… unless you want to brag with it as a fancy accessory that fits your mouth.
On the other hand, there are certain sports that require using one for safety purposes and if you decide to exclude it, chances are that you will end up either with a serious orofacial injury, or a huge dentist bill.
The True Purpose of a Mouthguard
This product is among the most popular when it comes to sports equipment, but where does its fame come from? Well, in addition to shorts, shirts, socks, and shoes that are there to keep you dressed, a mouth guard actually protects your well-being, which is much more important.
Now, it is quite clear that different models offer different types of protection, but the idea remains the same — to protect you from an orofacial injury that, believe it or not, is quite common in both sports that include contact with intent and those where it happens on accident like basketball or soccer.
What is a mouthguard used for? To be honest, unlike some other sports equipment, it doesn’t have more than the above-mentioned purpose, but that doesn’t make it any less valuable. Looking at the design of an average product of this kind, it has a focus on tooth protection and shock absorption.
Often including fortification on the important front and edge points, there is more than one mouth guard type. If you are engaging in sports like boxing and MMA, you will need one that has a focus on upper and lower jaw protection. On the other hand, if you are a soccer player, it is the front tooth protection that you should be looking for.
Different Types of Mouthguards
As we mentioned above, the relevant market offers hundreds of different models. Still, this doesn’t mean that there are more than a few types that are popular, and commonly used by professional athletes.
The most common one seems to be the boil-and-bite option as it is affordable, reliable, and comfortable if you know what you are looking for. No matter how hard it may sound, the application of this one is not hard and while you will need a few more things other than the mouthguard (pot, ice bucket, timer), you will have it done in a matter of 10 minutes. Once you boil the mouth guard for a few minutes and let it cool down, you will be able to model it according to your teeth and gum line, and press the edges and the front until you have the perfect fit.
On the other hand, the type that requires much less effort is the custom fit mouthguard. Still, this one is usually given out by sponsors or worn only by professional athletes as it turns out to be quite expensive for a tight budget.
Still, it is a worthy investment, as a custom-fit mouth guard will last much longer, due to the fact that it is more hygienic and taking care of it is quite easy — just rinse it after every use, store it in a dry and ventilated place, and clean it with mild soap and water every week or two.
If you have ever watched high-intensity sports, you have surely seen the players wearing mouth guards. These are critical for jaw and dental protection, and while that may be their only purpose, it is quite a critical one.