by Linh Cao-Chan, DDS on 09/14/14
There's has been recent published studies about using sports mouthguards and reduction of brain injury. High school sports such as football, field hockey, ice hockey, lacrosse and wrestling require wearing mouthguards during participation. These players are at risk for damage to their teeth if their jaws are hit from any angle from physical impact of another player, or a fast flying ball. Not only the teeth can be damaged, but also the brain which sits above the upper jaw.
The mouthguard covers the upper teeth, which creates space between the the upper and lower teeth, and space between where the upper & lower jaw meets at the TMJ (temperomandibular joint). In a high impact hit with the mouthguard in place, the teeth won't gnash against each other, and the lower jaw won't collide so hard with the upper jaw, therefore lessening the impact on the brain above.
The study found that kids playing football who had custom made mouthguards (which fit better and are thicker) have less than half the number concussion/ mild brain injury compared to those that wore stock mouthguards (from sporting goods stores). Of course having a mouthguard is better than none. The stock mouthguards just do not fit as well in the mouth and move around, kids may not wear them properly or cut off part of the mouthguard to make it more comfortable, therefore reducing its effectiveness
If you are interested in getting a custom mouthguard, we can make one one for you at the office, even with your school mascot or logo!