March 12, 2018
A mouthguard is a device that covers the teeth and gums. It is used as part of dental procedures and treatment for temporomandibular joint disorder (jaw joint pain) and bruxism (teeth grinding). But most commonly, it is used as a protective device to prevent oral injuries in contact sports.
Approximately, one third of all dental injuries are sports related. Thus the use of a mouthguard can prevent more than 200,000 oral injuries to the mouth each year. It is designed to absorb and distribute the forces and impact received while participating in athletic activities. Concretely, it helps protect the soft tissues of the lips, cheeks, gums and tongue by covering the sharp surfaces of the teeth. It also cushions against and reduces the force upon impact thus preventing jaw fracture and reducing chance of concussion.
The most popular and most commonly used type of mouthguard worn by many athletes is the mouth adapted or the Boil-and-Bite Mouthguard. It is made up of a thermoplastic material manufactured in a pre-formed shape in various sizes that can be adapted to fit more closely to an individual's teeth and gums by heating and molding such as boiling then placing in the mouth.
Step by step guide to mold a Boil & Bite Mouthguard?
Custom fitting your own Boil and Bite Mouthguard is just so easy and would only require basic household items. Things needed are mouthguard, scissors, pan and water. The whole process will only take less than 5 minutes. Firstly, measure the length of the mouthguard so that the guard does not pass your 2nd molar and the rim of the guard should be no more than 1-2mm short of your inner lip fold then carefully trim the guard using sharp scissors. Then bring to a boil 4-6 inches of water in a pan then remove from heat source. Thereupon, submerge the guard in the pan of hot water for 30 seconds using a spoon while making sure that it does touch the sides of the pan. Then remove the guard and wait for 20 seconds before placing it into your mouth.
Thereafter, bite down firmly on the guard and allow your tongue to press along the roof of your mouth creating a strong suction to draw all water and air out of the guard and also use your fingers and press firmly along the rim of the guard against your teeth and gums from outside your mouth. Then remove the mouthguard and dunk it in ice water to let it cool for a minute or two and try the fit. It should fit snugly against your top teeth without having to hold it with your tongue, and it should fit naturally into your bottom teeth. Also, always keep in mind not to chew on your guard and not to leave it in hot places like inside the trunk of your car or under direct sunlight.