Whether an athlete or a practitioner of a combat sport like Martial Arts, mouthguards have always been part of the uniform. But have you just got braces and are wondering can you wear a regular mouthguard with braces?
Yes, you can wear a mouthguard for protection of teeth with braces on. However, it’s the word “Regular” that needs attention.
So, stick by us till the end, and blow by blow you will get to know can you wear a mouth guard over braces?
Let’s break into the details of it.
What is a Mouthguard?
A mouth guard is a helmet to your teeth. It’s a cushion-type appliance made to protect teeth from getting injured when fighting with braces. Since the face, and particularly speaking, the jaws and teeth are always the primary areas of the target. In fact, according to the American Dental Association, 20% of the injuries during combat sports are maxillofacial.
So, these mouthguards snugly fit the teeth’ shape. As a result, the chances of your teeth and jaws coming together reduce by many folds, and the risk of jaw injuries and chipping teeth decreases.
Similarly, when boxing with braces, there are greater chances of getting punched with braces.
Can You Wear A Regular Mouthguard with Braces?
No, where the use of a mouthguard when having braces is one of the must-add things, you can’t use regular mouthguards when braces are on.
There is a specially designed boxing mouthpiece for braces available at pharmacies, or you can make a custom one too.
Conveniently, there are four types of mouthguards:
- Regular mouthguard
- Boil and bite mouthguard
- Custom mouthguard
- Stock mouthguard
Among these, boxers with braces use stock mouthguards, boil and bite mouthguards, and custom mouthguards.
But, in contrast to it, you can’t use a regular mouthguard as a boxing mouthpiece for braces.
Related: Check some specially designed mouthguards available in the market here.
Why can you not wear a regular Mouthguard for Boxing with Braces?
Where the answer to “Can you wear a regular mouthguard with braces” is a clear-cut NO, let’s figure out the reason behind it.
A standard mouthguard aims at protecting the teeth by shock absorption, thus preventing them from getting chipped.
But, in the case of the teeth with braces on, the braces and the wires of it help in the realignment of teeth so that they can be brought in a straight line, leaving you with a beautiful smile to carry.
However, the regular mouth guard doesn’t allow the movement of teeth as their structure changes and starts to become aligned and straight.
That is why investing in a regular mouthguard when boxing with braces is not a good option. Rather opt for the other sets of mouthguards we have mentioned.
Which set of Mouthguards can you wear with Braces?
Although the answer to “Can you box with braces” is YES, you need to be very careful about the braces and choose the right mouthpiece set for them.
So, here we are, enlisting a few good orthodontic mouthguards along with the details and advantages.
Stock Mouth Guard
The first category of mouthguards that we can opt for when boxing it fighting with braces is a stock mouthguard.
The only advantage that these mouthguards provide is that they allow you to have braces and wear mouthguards at the same time. Apart from that, it comes with the least amount of protection to offer.
These mouthguards are not custom and hence hardly fit your teeth or jaw shape of yours. So, although it is the cheapest of all the mouthguards, costing somewhere between $1 to $30, it is the last option you should go for.
These mouthpieces provide minimal protection and keep on clenching your teeth to provide support during boxing or other high-risk sports.
Boil and Bite Mouthguard
The next type of orthodontic mouthguard that you can opt for with braces is a Boil and Bite mouthguard.
So, these mouthpieces are comparatively expensive, costing somewhere between $20 to $60.
The best fact about these boil and bite mouthguards is that you can remold them again and again into the shape of your teeth. So, as you are wearing braces, the natural alignment of the teeth will change accordingly after a week or two. In such situations, there are two possibilities:
- If there is less change in the alignment of the teeth, the boil and bite mouthguard will automatically change its shape too, since it consists of medical-grade silicone.
- If that doesn’t work, you don’t need to buy a new set of mouthguards. No, not at all. All you need to do is take your mouthguard to the nearest chemical store or a chemist. He will heat the silicon mouthpiece to remove it according to the present alignment of your teeth.
Moreover, it is a double mouthguard that provides protection to both upper and lower jaws.
The only problem reported by many users is that this boil and bite mouthguard is less durable and can hardly last longer than one season. Additionally, since it isn’t made by a professional, it is a bit weak near the sharp ends of teeth.
Custom Mouth Guard
The last option of mouthguards that braces leave you with is the custom orthodontic mouthguards.
Yes, these mouthguards are undoubtedly the best option to go for. Although these are expensive, they are worth it.
So, all you do is go to the dentist. He takes the impression of your teeth by packing wax around your teeth with braces on. In this way, you get a perfectly fitted custom mouthguard. Moreover, since it comprises wax, you can easily remold it and make another impression on the teeth.
So, these are the best bets you should go for.
The custom orthodontic mouthguard is the ideal boxing mouthpiece for braces as it provides the maximum protection and space to fit in.
With this, the question, “Can you wear a regular mouthguard with braces ” sums up very well. You can opt for the three mouthguards we have discussed.
However, it is better to consult a boxing or fitness coach before buying the mouthguard for your braces and consult if you need a double mouthguard or the upper arch one.
Why wear Mouthguards- A Few Benefits
Whether wearing an Orthodontic Mouthguard or a stock mouthguard, there are various benefits of wearing this mouthpiece. A few are:
- Protection against chipped teeth or broken teeth
- Prevent root or nerve damage of teeth, or permanent tooth loss
- Safeguards against cerebral hemorrhage for boxers with braces particularly
- Double and shelf braces mouthguard prevent the lower jaws from jamming into the upper jaws
- Prevention from bruising of cheeks and lips. Especially the kids mouthguard is for this safety purpose.
- A double mouthguard offers protection to both the jaws and set of teeth.
- Shock absorption when getting punched with braces
How to use a Mouthguard with Braces
Once done with the part Can you wear a regular mouthguard with braces and which type of mouthguards you can opt for, let’s move to the next part related to how to wear a mouthguard over braces. So, here are the steps
- First of all, go to your coach and orthodontist and consult on the type of mouthguard you should opt for.
- Then, buy the respected mouthpiece, and take it to your orthodontist.
- He will take the impression or mold it as per the shape and alignment of your teeth.
- Make sure to check once if it fits correctly.
- There are chances that it can be loose or too tight. In that case, ask the orthodontist to remold it until you feel comfortable.
- Here you go. Always remember to wear these guards while doing some intense or even simple physical activity in order to avoid long-term complications and damage.
Care of Your Mouthguard- A Few Tips
Apart from buying a suitable mouthguard for your braces, it is equally important to take care of them properly. So, here are a few care tips you can follow in order to avoid the accumulation of bacterial plaque and other microorganisms:
- Always remove your mouthguards once done with the usage.
- Wash and clean them thoroughly with either toothpaste or a mild antimicrobial solution.
- Dry the mouthguards properly by placing them in direct sunlight.
- Store them in a clean, dry place free of dust.
- If your mouthguard gets cracked from some point, don’t use it. Instead, opt for a new one.
Conclusion- The Final Sum Up!
To cut a long story short, we can say that the answer to “Can you wear a regular mouthguard with braces?” dips in favor of No. Instead, there are special mouthguards that you need to buy. And among them, the custom fit is the best option.
Chris Bent is a professional MMA Trainer who has expertise in both Martial Arts and Karate and he loves to teach Men, Women and Kids.