At Chapel Hill Family and Cosmetic Dentistry, we offer custom sports mouthguards and night guards. We make them from special plastic, and mold them to fit the exact shape and contour of your teeth. Your dentist can make them for children and adults to wear during sports or at night to prevent teeth clenching and grinding.
Mouthguards and night guards are not interchangeable, as they are for different uses. However, both sports mouthguards and night guards are general dental treatments that can help protect teeth from further damage. Learn more about why each mouthguard is important to the teeth and gums below.
Custom Sports Mouthguards at Chapel Hill Cosmetic and Family Dentistry
Mouthguards are for physical activity to protect the teeth from trauma. Contact sports like boxing, lacrosse, football, soccer, and basketball often require the participant to wear a mouthguard. The mouthguard effectively protects the teeth from forceful blows. However, it also protects the soft tissues such as the tongue, lip, and cheek lining (which could be bitten during certain maneuvers).
Studies on athletes have shown that wearing a custom mouthguard can even improve on-field performance. The body does not need to waste energy clenching the jaw to keep a mouthguard that is loose or uncomfortable in place.
Custom mouthguards are comfortable enough to wear throughout your event and enable you to consume fluids while in place. For young athletes, this means that they are more likely to keep their mouthguard in and protect their growing smiles.
When it comes to protecting your teeth and dental appliances during contact sports, a custom sports mouthguard provides protection that is far superior to over-the-counter options. There are several advantages to choosing a custom mouthguard over a store-bought, one-size-fits-all option. Custom mouthguards are:
- More comfortable: Custom mouthguards are designed to fit the unique shape of the patient’s teeth, providing a comfortable and secure fit that doesn’t interfere with breathing, speaking, or playing sports.
- More protective: Custom mouthguards are made from high-quality materials that absorb shock and protect the teeth, lips, and gums from injury during impact.
- More durable: Custom mouthguards are made with a higher level of craftsmanship and attention to detail than store-bought mouthguards, ensuring they will last longer and provide ongoing protection.
- More hygienic: Custom mouthguards are easier to clean and maintain, reducing the risk of bacteria growth and infection.
Teeth Grinding Night Guards
Night guards, as the name indicates, are worn at night while the patient sleeps. Patients wear these to prevent teeth grinding and damage from teeth clenching. Furthermore, your dentist can incorporate a night guard into a TMJ treatment plan to protect the teeth from damage. The night guard can help to stabilize the bite during sleep and alleviate the symptoms of TMJ disorders.
Patients with mild to severe cases of TMJ can wear down or break their teeth with harsh teeth grinding. Which is why it is so important to protect your teeth with a mouthguard or night guard.
Creating a Mouthguard
Fitting a custom mouthguard requires a visit to our Chapel Hill dental office for dental impressions. These will be sent to a lab for the fabrication of your custom-fit mouthguard. Once the mouthguard is complete, Dr. James Furgurson will ensure that the mouthguard fits against your teeth and does not slip. A properly fitting mouthguard ensures that your teeth and gums are protected from TMJ pressure or contact sports.
Custom Mouthguards FAQs
Why is a custom sports mouthguard better for your teeth?
A custom sports mouthguard is made specifically to fit your teeth and mouth. This means it will properly remain in place and provide the very best protection for your teeth. A custom-fitted sports mouthguard can save you from experiencing a dental emergency and thousands of dollars.
How long will it take to get receive my mouthguard?
The mouthguard fabrication process will take about two weeks and two trips to our dental office. At your first appointment, we will take several impressions of your teeth and send them to the dental lab for fabrication. In about two weeks, you will return to our office where you will try on your new custom mouthguard for a proper fit.
Why do I need a night guard?
A night guard is for to patients who show signs of bruxism, or teeth grinding. At your regular checkups, your dentist will let you know if they see signs of damaged teeth from grinding. The damage to the teeth is usually evident to your hygienist and dentist. The best way to protect your teeth and prevent further damage is to wear a night guard every night while you sleep. These provide sufficient protection for your teeth if worn regularly.
Should a mouthguard touch your gums?
Your mouthguard should not entirely cover your gums, however it should fit over a small portion of them. When you wear your mouthguard, it protects your gums and the roots of your teeth from damage.
How long do night guards last?
There are a variety of factors that influence the lifespan of night guards. Night guards have an average lifespan of around five years. However if they aren’t taken care of, they may wear much faster.
How often should you clean your night guard?
You should thoroughly clean a night guard every week. The most common method to clean your night guard is to let it soak in a bowl of water and an over-the-counter denture cleanser.
Contact our Chapel Hill Office Today
Do you play contact sports? Do you suffer from TMJ disorders? Contact us for treatment today. If you are a new patient, call our office at 919-205-9308. Returning patients may call 919-251-9313. You may also request a consultation with Dr. Furgurson on our website. If you have any remaining questions about sports mouthguards or TMJ night guards, let Dr. Furgurson know at your next consultation. He will be happy to clarify information about each of these treatments.