The Weekly Bite - Performance And Protection Spotlights

Athletic Equipment: 3 Tips To Choosing The Right Mouthguard

Bobbie Quinn - Thursday, August 13, 2015

“mouthguards”/How do you choose the right mouthguard for your players?

When it comes to finding the perfect mouthguard, there are multiple factors to consider -- from sport and age to individual need and desire -- and there are a lot of options to choose from. It’s easy to become overwhelmed quickly, and that’s the last thing you want when purchasing athletic equipment for an entire team.

So, how do you choose the right mouthguard for your players? Here is your simple three-step guide to purchase the perfect mouthguard:

1. The Right Mouthguard Has The Right Protection

It’s not just a clever name: mouthguards guard mouths. But are your players properly protected?

Proper protection starts with a minimum of 4 mm of material in the important impact zones -- the areas in the front of the teeth and under the molars -- and means there isn’t bulky material where protection isn’t needed. However, these zones change from sport to sport

It’s important that your athletes have the proper level of protection for their specific sport or they could be at risk of injury, as well as general discomfort on the field, court or ice, which may be very distracting.

A Great Price

With six different styles to choose from, there is a perfect Gladiator waiting to lead you into battle starting at $45.

Which Gladiator Is Right For Me?

For contact sports like football and ice hockey, frontal impact is guarded by the facemask or shield, so your players’ mouthguards may have a thinner frontal profile, but feature more protection under the molars. Along with the correct protection, that also allows for more comfort and better breathing and communication, which is highly important in team sports.  

Sports like field hockey or girls’ lacrosse, where there is a possibility of direct impact to the face, require more protection in the front zone to absorb the impact from the stick or ball.

2. The Right Mouthguard Has The Right Fit

In order for your players to get the most protection and comfort out of their mouthguards, they simply need to be worn properly. And that all starts with the fit.

Everyone’s mouth is different, so it’s important to be sure that they’re getting a mouthguard that’s been designed taking into account the exact individual structure of their mouths. Their guards must have a tight enough fit to firmly stay on their upper teeth without being held in place with the lower jaw. That means no biting or clenching!

When a mouthguard fits snuggly it stays in place during any impact and won’t become dislodged. It should never be able to come loose and float around the mouth. Players should only be able to remove their mouthguards by pulling them out with their fingers.

3. The Right Mouthguard Has The Right Accessories

Today’s mouthguards are wildly different than the mouthguards of the past -- thankfully! Gone are the days of boiling-and-biting a big chunk of rubber, as mouthguards are now produced using state-of-the-art materials and feature different options to personalize the guard that’s right for each individual player.

That means your players are getting higher performance mouthguards and guards that are much more durable -- which is particularly important for mouthguard chewers. And mouthguards now feature performance upgrades, like technology that locks the lower jaw in a slightly forward position, giving the athlete 17% gains in extremity strength with less stress on the temporomandibular joint. According to Kinesiology studies, this helps make the athlete’s body more relaxed for greater range of motion, flexibility and balance -- meaning athletic performance is actually enhanced by a mouthguard.

And let’s not forget complete personalization! From color and logo to name and number, your players don't just get a piece of athletic equipment, but a new favorite piece of team gear that becomes an essential component to completing their game face!

With the right protection, the right fit and the right accessories, it’s not hard to choose the mouthguard that’s right for your players.

Choose The Right Mouthguard

Wild NRG commented on 24-Aug-2015 09:37 PM
Being prepared for an event could always go wrong if you have chosen the wrong gear and accessories. This tips means a lot. Thanks. :)
Jasper Whiteside commented on 28-Nov-2016 07:04 PM
It might be possible that one mouth guard is more comfortable than another, but another that is less comfortable offers more protection. It would be nice to use one or the other depending on how much contact you are expecting. For example, if you are practicing at a facility you can expect less contact from your teammates than if you were competing in a match.
Gladiator Custom Mouthguards commented on 29-Nov-2016 10:37 AM
Thank you for your comment Jasper. While that is a great thought, the fact is that accidents can always happen that you cannot plan for. Even in practice, you and your teammate can be looking the opposite way and have a collision just as or even more forceful than in a game. You always want to be planning to have the proper amount of protection whether in practice or a game. Your teammates never plan to hurt you but the risk is always there, especially in contact sports.
Cindy Tesler commented on 04-Jan-2017 02:08 PM
Thanks for pointing out that while it seems obvious, the right mouthguard offers the right protection. You also said that the proper protection starts with a minimum of 4mm of material in impact zones. I think it's important to choose a mouth guard that can be custom-formed to fit your mouth.
Annika Larson commented on 17-May-2017 10:04 PM
My sons are involved in a variety of sports, and we want to make sure they get the right mouthguards for protection. As you explained, ensuring that it hs the right fit to stay firmly on the upper teeth without a bite is essential.

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Author Bio

Bobbie Quinn

Bobbie Quinn, co-founder of Gladiator Custom Mouthguards, played both lacrosse and field hockey as a youth and went on to play Division 1 women’s lacrosse in college. Bobbie continues to play women’s league field hockey and enjoys watching her son play various sports.

Bobbie Quinn

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