Mouth Guards: Custom vs. Store-Bought

Have you ever woken up with a sore jaw? Has your dentist ever mentioned that you grind your teeth? A mouth guard may be the solution. There are many types of guards that serve a variety of purposes, from night-time models to the bite-and-boil versions you find at the pharmacy.

Finding the right one for your needs will not only save you from a score of dental problems later on, it will also help you save money in the long run.

Pre-formed mouth guards are often available at your local pharmacy. Their upside is that they are low cost and ready-to-wear. The downside is that they usually don’t fit properly – unlike custom mouth guards, which are formed to your specific mouth, jaws and teeth.  Keep in mind that there is no ‘standard’ as everyone’s teeth are different.

A properly fitted custom mouth guard is especially important for:

  • Anyone playing contact sports like hockey, football, wrestling, and lacrosse
  • Non-contact sports such as gymnastics, skateboarding, and mountain biking
  • People who wear braces or have fixed bridge work – for instance, an accidental hit to the face during sports could cause serious damage to bracketed teeth or other orthodontic work if no mouth guard is in place
  • Adults and children who grind their teeth and need a barrier to save their enamel

Custom mouth guards are fabricated using  a special dental mould. A manufacturing dental laboratory creates them with specific instructions from your dentist depending on what your needs are. Store-bought mouth guards, although cheap, cannot incorporate features specific to you. For instance, perhaps you grind your teeth more on one side. Or perhaps adjustments need to be made depending on the type of sport you play and the state of your teeth at the time.

Whatever your particular needs may be, custom mouth guards are the way to go. If you or a family member are in need of one, call us today for a consultation.