You have done your work in preparing for a fight, but there is one thing you can’t do despite your strength, endurance, and agility. During a boxing or kickboxing bout, your focus might be on your competitor and not in the protection of your teeth mouth.
That said, a boxing or kickboxing mouthguard that fits perfectly should be on hand to protect the delicate parts of your mouth.
Will improper fit affect performance?
If the mouthguard you are wearing is impinging on the insides of your cheeks, would you be able to concentrate on throwing punches? Perhaps you will have the will to do so at the start of the bout. However, when the match progresses and you start feeling the heat, it may be difficult to focus if your mouthguard gives you discomfort. Yes, an ill-fitting mouthguard should have no place in your life as an amateur or professional athlete.
Does a mouthguard offer protection against injury?
According to studies, dental injuries are twice more likely if the athletes do not wear a mouthguard. Contact sports such as ice hockey, field hockey, American football, wrestling, boxing, and kickboxing put athletes at high risk for dental and oral injuries. This type of injury may not be life threatening, but it could limit an athlete’s capacity to continue training and joining competitions.
The cost of dental treatment and rehabilitation could be staggering if the injury is significant. To avoid career-disabling lulls in training, as well as exorbitant doctors and hospital fees, wear a mouthguard as advised by your coach or personal trainer.
Which type of mouthguard is ideal?
The answer to this question depends on the specific use and the person’s sports activities. Generally, there are two types: the boil-and-bite and the instant fit guard. Boil-and-bite mouthguards can be molded using hot water so that it conforms to a person’s teeth and gums. The fit should be close enough to be comfortable and cause no impingement on soft tissues inside the mouth, such as the tongue and insides of the cheeks.
Meanwhile, the second type of mouth guard can be placed in the oral cavity straight out of its packaging. It does not require molding and is ready for use upon sterilization. The pads are soft enough to be comfortable. Nevertheless, the fit it provides is not customized to the contours of the individual user.
Do you feel comfortable enough wearing an instant fit product? Does it matter if your mouthguard fits your mouth’s contours perfectly?
When is a mouthguard not right for me?
This last question should serve as your guide in choosing the right product. If, for any reason, you feel like gagging upon wearing one, discard it. A mouthguard that touches the soft palate would make you gag. If you cannot keep it snugly inside the mouth without biting on it, then you’re wearing the inappropriate mouthguard.
Wearing a mouthguard could save you from a career-ending injury. There is no need to clench your jaw. If you can’t help it, tell your coach and ask for help in finding the mouth guard that suits you best.