School is almost out, and summer is on its way in. This means one thing: busy as ever with multiple sports seasons during the best outdoor weather. With that in mind, you have to question: just how much protection are your athletes getting?
Whether you’re a coach for a high school football team or your watching your 10-year old daughter play soccer, protection and safety while playing sports is a must. One of the biggest (and most important) areas to protect is the athlete’s mouth, with a custom-fit mouthguard.
Why buy a custom-fit mouthguard when there’s boil-and-bite ones?
Although boil-and-bite mouthguards are the most commonly used today, they are not the most preferred by dentists. As mentioned in an article on Dentistry Today, these mouthguards “do not provide the proper thickness, comfort, or critical protection of the posterior teeth”. When you boil the mouthguard and begin to bite down on it, your teeth clamp down on the material and stretch it out, making it less thick. Over time, the material will break down, leaving less protection around the teeth.
Sure, it’s a cheap, simple way to have a mouthguard which somewhat fits the athlete’s mouth. However, most dentists agree that it does not get the job done in the best way, and can lead to oral and head injuries (which are the most common injuries in sports, by the way). Important ways properly fitted mouthguards protect the mouth are shown in the picture below, as well as some problems that may arise with the boil-and-bites.
What is Pro-Form and why should I get it?
Pro-Form mouthguards, manufactured in the United States by Keystone Industries, are high-quality custom-fit mouthguards designed with the best material on the market to protect athletes of all sports. As opposed to the boil-and-bites, Pro-Form mouthguards provide the necessary comfort and thickness with an ability to talk and breathe easily, and protection of all teeth including the posteriors.
On top of the long-running track record of protection they provide, Keystone Pro-Form mouthguards can also be made in specific color schemes, designs, and have the addition of custom decals. What cooler incentive is there than that? Everyone wants to be like the pros, and they’re known for wearing these types of mouthguards.
These require an impression cast of the patient’s dentition as the initial step. The mouthguard is then made from this cast. Vacuum formed guards are made from single or multilayered polyethylene. Other techniques include pressure lamination to sandwich material together under high pressure. Keystone also manufactures the vacuum forming machines.
To prove the importance of mouthguards and custom fitting them, an article from Fox News brings out information about teeth belonging to Olympic athletes over the years. From the amount of stress they’re under to the food they eat, teeth were not looking so good for the Olympians. To help out, there have been dental facilities at the Olympics in London, Sochi, and soon to be Rio de Janeiro in 2016. They’ve handed out over 500 mouthguards at the past two games for athletes who lost teeth and wanted to prevent losing teeth, and the initiative has been welcome warmly for the 2016 games.
To learn more and purchase Pro-Form mouthguards, please click here.