Mouthguards are an essential tool for protecting your child's teeth. A pediatric mouthguard is an oral device used to protect the teeth. Depending on your child's needs, it can just fit over the biting surfaces of the teeth, or it can cover every surface of the teeth, as well as some of the gum tissue.
Your pediatric dentist may recommend a mouthguard for two reasons. When your child:
Some have likened a pediatric mouthguard to a crash helmet for the teeth. A sports guard covers every part of the teeth. It helps protect your child from soft tissue injuries, as well as loose or knocked out teeth if they get hit in the mouth.
Sports mouthguards are particularly helpful when playing contact sports like football. However, children who participate in low-contact or even no-impact sports can benefit from a sport guard. Though they might not get hit in the mouth by another player, there's a chance they can come into contact with:
In most schools, mouthguards are not just recommended, they're mandated for children participating in sports programs. Some children may feel resistant to wearing a pediatric mouthguard. Explaining to them that the other students must wear a mouthguard as well can help. Additionally, mouthguards are mandated in many professional sports institutions. Reminding your child that their favorite athlete wears a guard to protect their teeth can help get your child on board when it comes time to create their custom mouthguard.
A nighttime mouth guard — also known as a splint — can help protect your child's teeth and jaw from the damaging effects of bruxism. When a person clenches and grinds their teeth in their sleep, it puts excess pressure on the jaw joint and the teeth, possibly resulting in:
The night guard takes the brunt of the pressure, thereby protecting the teeth. It provides a smoother surface so that when your child grinds their teeth, there's not as much resistance or pressure on the jaw joints. The result will be less pain and healthier teeth.
The process for obtaining a mouthguard for your child is relatively simple.
Your child will need to visit us twice:
First appointment: We'll take a digital impression of their teeth, which we'll send to a lab to create a custom guard. We use a special video camera to scan your child's teeth. There is no need for messy, goopy impression material.
Second appointment: Second appointment: Your child will try on their new dental appliance. If it fits and is comfortable, your child is good to go! We'll provide you with mouthguard cleaning instructions at this time as well.
At Children's Dental Specialties, our goal is to keep your child's teeth and gums healthy and strong. In addition to providing services like professional dental cleanings and oral examinations to prevent cavities and gum disease, we offer other preventative services, including mouthguards. We'll help your child learn how to care for their teeth for a lifetime, so they can do their best to prevent painful dental conditions. Schedule your child's mouthguard consultation today.