If you or your child plays multiple sports, chances are you've noticed that mouthguards are not identical throughout the different games. Different sports come with different typical mouthguard styles, depending largely on the kinds of common impact that will be undertaken.
At Damage Control Mouthguards, we're proud to offer a wide range of mouthguards for any sport, from MMA mouthguards to basketball, hockey and even rarer areas like BMX or field hockey mouthguards. Why are mouthguards different across these various sports, and what are some of the major differences you'll find in mouthguard construction across different games? Here's a primer on this area.
The simple explanation for why mouthguards will be different across various competitions is one we touched on above: Impact and risk levels varies widely across sports. A football player is not likely to experience the same sorts of common impacts and mouth risks as, say, a martial artist – there are some similarities, of course, but also some major differences.
Mouthguards should reflect these differences. They're designed within a given sport to provide support in the areas that are most commonly impacted, plus with other characteristics like breathing, communication needs and more also in mind. Our next few sections will go over how different sports or areas typically see their mouthguards designed for maximum effectiveness.
The thickest and strongest mouthguard materials are generally reserved for those in MMA, boxing and other combat sports or forms of martial arts. Those in these sports may experience direct impacts to the head and face on a regular basis, plus they do not have a helmet or a cage to protect them – as a result, these sports at high levels have numerous medical requirements from various commissions. This also means the mouthguard has a lot of work to do.
For this reason, many of these mouth guards will be thicker and have about three to four millimeters of material than other mouth guards. This extra material absorbs shock at a high level providing max protection to those who are at-risk of direct impact.
For helmeted sports, such as football, hockey, lacrosse and others, significant protection is still required – after all, these are all impact or contact sports where collisions involving head movement are expected. However, because these athletes at least typically have facial and head protection from their helmet, a bit less material is often used.
Typically, two to three millimeters of material will be used in these mouthguards. This allows for ideal cushioning, but also allows for easy breathing and speaking. These mouthguards do just fine for impacts that cause the jaw to close suddenly, which are common in these games. Basketball and Others
For many other sports, such as basketball and others where impacts do happen but are not as direct or common, thinner mouthguards are generally safe and acceptable. Two to three millimeters of material or less can be used, allowing for both protection and comfort during play.
For more on any of our sport mouthguards, or to learn about why custom mouthguards are ideal for any sport, speak to the staff at Damage Control Mouthguards today.