Have a sports mouthguard question?
Can I claim my mouthguard on medicare or private health insurance?
Our Wear a Mouthguard™ mouthguards are claimable for children, teen and senior sports players with private health insurance dental extras cover under item number 151. Please check with your private health fund for further details.
Why wear a mouthguard?
The Australian Dental Association (ADA) recommends that anyone who participates in a sport that carries a risk of contact to the face should wear a mouthguard. The ADA states that mouthguards should be worn while playing and training for any sport that could involve contact to the face. A sports mouthguard helps absorb the shock experienced by a blow to the face, which might otherwise result in an injury to the mouth or jaw. A heavy collision can result in chipped or broken teeth, internal damage to a tooth, tooth loss, injuries to the soft tissue of the mouth, and, in severe cases, concussion or a broken jaw.
Injuries like these can lead to long and potentially expensive treatment to restore the teeth and the mouth back to normal function and appearance.
What type of mouthguard should I get?
There are two types of mouthguards; over-the-counter or custom fitted. The Australian Dental Association recommends custom-fitted mouthguards as being essential for the proper protection of your children’s teeth.
A correctly fitted custom-made mouthguard protects the child’s teeth, gums and jaw. It enables them to breathe and speak more easily compared to an over-the-counter or ‘boil and bite’ mouthguard.
Dentists make custom-fitted mouthguards directly from an impression of your child’s teeth. Your dentist will be able to accurately assess your child’s mouth to provide the optimum dimensions, coverage and thickness to ensure the best possible protection for your child, relative to their sport.
How long will my sports mouthguard last?
Mouthguards for growing children should be reviewed by their dentist at their regular check-up to ensure it still fits correctly. It may need to be replaced or adjusted as your child’s mouth changes through growth or the arrival of new teeth. We offer ‘same season’ peace-of-mind by providing free adjustments on any of our mouthguards purchased.
Adult mouthguards should be reviewed every 12 months to ensure ongoing correct fit and will only need to be replaced if major changes occur to the teeth or upon the excessive build-up of bacteria.
My child’s teeth are growing and changing. Should I get a custom-fitted mouthguard?
YES! It is very important to protect your child’s baby (primary) teeth as they play a vital role in how the adult teeth develop. They save space for the adult teeth and help guide them into position. Your child will likely require a new sports mouthguard each year until they are approximately 16 to 18 years of age. Should you child’s mouth change within the same sporting season as the mouthguard was purchased we are more than happy to provide free adjustments. Just call our office to arrange a time to pop in.
How do I look after my mouthguard?
A sports mouthguard is made using Bioplast®, a high-quality FDA-approved product. To prevent excessive bacterial build-up, your guard should be rinsed in cold soapy water after each use. It should then be dried and stored in a protective container. Keep in a cool place as high temperatures can cause distortion.
Can I clean my mouthguard in the dishwasher?
No! High heat is damaging to mouthguards and can cause distortion. Cold soapy water or a professional oral cleaning product such as Picksters Oral Appliance Cleaning Kit (for mouthguards, dentures and retainers) are the best cleaning options.
My child just started karate. The instructor told us to just get a boil-and-bite…
Our experience and the advice of the Australian Dental Association is that over-the-counter mouthguards can sometimes put your child’s teeth at greater risk than no mouthguard at all. Because an over-the-counter sports mouthguard can be uncomfortable and annoying, a poorly fitting mouthguard tends to be ‘played’ with in the mouth rather than being kept in the correct position. This can be very dangerous in head/facial impact situations that occur in sports such as football when mouthguards are being worn.
What is lamination?
One of the newest and arguably most effective types of mouthguard are those that are pressure laminated. Lamination is defined as the layering of material to achieve a defined end result and thickness under a high heat and pressure environment. With pressure lamination, two or three layers of material are used in the sports mouthguard to achieve the necessary thickness. The layers then become chemically fused together.
What is the best way to handle a dental emergency?
The absence of a mouthguard during contact sports can have painful consequences.
Chipped or Broken Teeth
Save any pieces of tooth if possible. Rinse the mouth with warm water and rinse the broken pieces. If there’s bleeding, apply a piece of gauze to the area for about 10 minutes or until the bleeding stops. Apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth, cheek or lip near the damaged tooth to reduce swelling and relieve pain. See your dentist as soon as possible.
Knocked Out Tooth
Pick up the tooth by the crown (the part usually exposed in the mouth). Gently remove any large pieces of dirt or bark fragments. If the tooth is still dirty, give it a quick and gentle rinse in milk or water. Do not scrub it or remove any tissue fragments. Try to place the tooth back in its socket immediately. Ensure it is facing the right way and don’t force it.
Hold the tooth in place with a soft cloth or aluminium foil (placed either side of the tooth to aid stability). Ask the patient to bite gently to hold it in place.
If it is not possible to return the tooth to its socket, wrap it up in clear plastic film to keep it moist or place it in a small container of milk.
Seek dental treatment immediately – time is critical to save the tooth and prevent permanent damage.
Teeth that are returned to their socket within five to 10 minutes of being knocked out, and quickly treated by a dentist, have the highest chance of survival.
Extruded (Partially Dislodged) Tooth
To help relieve pain, apply a cold compress to the outside of the mouth or cheek in the affected area. See a dentist as soon as possible. An over-the-counter analgesic (paracetamol, ibuprofen or codeine based) may be taken if necessary.
- Rinse the patient’s mouth with a mild salt-water solution.
- Use a moistened piece of gauze, clean paper towel or a tea bag and apply pressure for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Hold a cold compress to the outside of the mouth or cheek in the affected area for 5 to 10 minutes.
- If the bleeding doesn’t stop, see your dentist immediately or visit a hospital emergency room. Continue to apply pressure until the patient can be treated.
What sports are mouthguards recommended for?
The Australian Dental Association recommends wearing a custom-fitted mouthguard when playing or training for:
- BMX bike riding
- cricket (wicket keeping or batting without a helmet)
- horse riding
- in-line skating
- martial arts
- snow ski racing
- water polo
- water skiing