Give a red card to boil and bite mouthguards

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As we kick off the new season, we come to the end of another busy spell, making mouthguards for sporty-types of all ages. These mouthguards are designed to withstand serious knocks at the highest level. To protect not only the teeth, but the jaws and surrounding area. They are fitted by dentists and then made in our specialist lab. This is the protection that is required at any level of contact sport. Worryingly, still many are opting for the over-the-counter ‘boil and bite’ mouthguards.

The dangers of ‘boil and bite’
Unsurprisingly, these mouthguards never provide the same level of fit as a custom-made option. These mouthguards are not only ineffective, but can potentially be dangerous as they are often very loose.

As a result of their poor fit, they are only (vaguely) effective when the mouth is closed, with the bottom teeth holding the mouthguard in place. They are highly likely to be knocked out on impact, or worse, knocked back into the mouth which could be a choking hazard.

A mouthguard should be totally comfortable, with no feeling of gagging. This feeling is common with the ‘boil and bite’, with some then cutting the back of them reducing their effectiveness further. They are often made from overly thick materials, which contributes to this discomfort and gagging, but they are quickly worn away in places when chewed.

Custom-made mouthguards stay in comfortably, and allow the individual to speak and breathe easily, so they can be worn for a full game without being removed.

What about children?
All of this applies to children as much as adults. We’ve seen the devastated faces of parents whose young children have lost their adult teeth at a young age. As soon as children have their adult teeth and are playing any contact sport, they should have a mouthguard. Usually this is around primary four.

It is easy to understand why parents in particular, opt for ‘boil and bites’. Children’s mouths are still developing so they may require new mouthguards a couple of times a year or more which is an expense. However, we’re of the view that this is no different to buying new footwear as children grow, with a custom-fitted mouthguard often costing a lot less than a new pair of boots or trainers.

As an aside, the designs we offer also means that children love them! They are easy to persuade children to wear them, even those who might have resisted wearing a mouthguard in the past. They can be personalised in design, their club colours or the Scottish national design, and are named to ensure they don’t get mixed up in the changing rooms.