Custom Mouthguards

in Columbia, SC

A dental or athletic mouthguard is a protective appliance worn in the mouth to prevent injuries to the teeth and surrounding soft tissues. It’s typically made of thermoplastic material that dentists mold to fit over the upper teeth, providing maximum protection while still allowing for normal breathing and talking.

At Washington Orthodontics, we provide custom-made mouthguards that perfectly fit every patient’s teeth. Our orthodontic team takes impressions of the teeth to create a mold, serving as a mouthguard model. This ensures it fits comfortably and securely in your mouth, providing the most effective protection against any potential injuries.

When Do We Recommend Wearing a Mouthguard?

Playing Sports

Mouthguards should be worn during any dangerous or contact sports or activities to prevent and reduce the risk of injury to your teeth, gums, and jaw. This includes ice hockey, field hockey, in-line skating, football and boxing.

Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

If you grind your teeth at night, a condition known as bruxism, your dentist may recommend wearing a night guard. This can protect your teeth from damage and help reduce jaw pain.

Treating Sleep Apnea or Snoring

In some cases, a specially designed mouthguard can help keep your airway open while you sleep, helping to treat conditions like snoring or obstructive sleep apnea.

TMJ Disorders

Mouthguards can also help alleviate symptoms associated with temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders, such as jaw pain or headaches.

Protecting Dental Work

A mouthguard can provide additional protection if you have extensive dental work, such as crowns, bridges or braces.

Benefits of Using a Mouthguard

Protection Against Dental Injuries

Mouthguards protect the teeth, gums and tongue from injuries, especially during contact sports. They can prevent chipped, broken or knocked-out teeth.

Prevent Jaw Damage

By cushioning any blows to the face, mouthguards can help prevent fractures or dislocations of the jaw.

Reduce the Risk of Concussion

Some evidence suggests that mouthguards can help reduce the risk of concussion by absorbing shock and stabilizing the head and neck during impact.

Teeth Grinding Protection

For those who suffer from bruxism (teeth grinding), a mouthguard can protect the teeth from damage and reduce symptoms like jaw pain and headaches.

Treatment of Sleep Apnea

Certain types of mouthguards, known as mandibular advancement devices, can treat mild to moderate sleep apnea and snoring by keeping your airway open while you sleep.

Protection for Orthodontic Appliances

If you wear braces or other orthodontic appliances, a mouthguard can provide additional protection and prevent injury to your lips and cheeks.

Remember, the effectiveness of a mouthguard in providing these benefits depends on its quality, fit and how consistently it’s worn.

How Long Should I Wear a Mouthguard to Take Effect?

The length of time it takes for a mouthguard to take effect varies depending on the purpose and individual circumstances. For sports, wearing a mouthguard every time you engage in physical activity or when there’s potential for contact with the face is recommended. This constant use will ensure maximum protection against injuries.

For conditions like bruxism, it may take a few weeks for the mouthguard to take effect as your jaw muscles and bite adjust to the new appliance. It may take a few nights to see improvement in the case of sleep apnea or snoring.

Follow your dentist's instructions on how long and when to wear your mouthguard for optimal results.

Washington Orthodontist Provides Customized Mouthguards in Columbia, SC

A Custom mouthguard ensures the best possible fit and protection for your specific needs. We will take impressions of your teeth and create a model for the appliance, ensuring it fits comfortably and securely. 

If you believe you need a mouthguard for you or your child, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with one of our orthodontists so they can assess your needs and recommend the right type of mouthguard for you.

Contact us today to book an appointment!