The short answer is yes, you can wear a sports mouthguard with braces! In fact, we recommend wearing a mouthguard with braces because the guard will protect both your orthodontic appliances and the soft tissue of your mouth from injury or damage in case of an accident. That being said, wearing a mouthguard with braces does present some unique concerns and considerations that you need to be aware of. In this quick guide, we’ll explain how to choose a mouthguard to wear with braces and how to mold a mouthguard over braces safely.
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Choosing a Mouthguard to Wear with Braces
If you wear braces, you need to be careful with custom mouthguards, which are based on exact scans or molds of your teeth. That’s because your teeth move during orthodontic treatment — in fact, that’s the whole point of getting braces. Thus, custom mouthguards that are fitted at the beginning of your treatment will not fit as well once the teeth start to move. The greater the movement, the worse the fit will be, which can compromise the protection provided by the mouthguard.
We recommend waiting on 3D scan fit mouthguards until the latter part of your treatment, or getting scanned more than once throughout your orthodontic treatment so you can ensure the fit changes alongside your teeth placement.
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Boil and bite mouthguards provide a good compromise between these two options. They are remoldable, which allows you to change the fit of the mouthguard throughout your orthodontic treatment. At GuardLab, we recommend the Apex or Apex Lite lines for those with braces, though you do need to be careful when molding these mouthguards at home — more on that in the next section. We don’t recommend our home impression custom kit when wearing braces because the putty impression cannot capture the braces accurately, which throws off the fit of the mouthguard.
Boil and bite mouthguards aren’t as durable as the custom fit, but the tradeoff is usually worth it given the unique concerns of braces. The fact that they are remoldable is also a unique asset for those undergoing orthodontic treatment. Once your treatment is over and your braces are removed, you can upgrade to a custom fit mouthguard that will last you for longer.
Molding a Mouthguard with Braces
Molding a cool mouthguard over braces requires extra care. For the boil and bite mouthguards, we recommend covering the protecting the brackets before molding the guard. This is because the warm plastic of the moldable guard can get stuck in the brackets, which can cause damage to both the braces and the mouthguard. It’s always a good idea to consult your dentist or orthodontist before making a final decision about your mouthguard or fitting it at home just to be on the safe side.
If you are not comfortable doing this on your own at home, you can ask your orthodontist to assist you with this process. Orthodontists do usually charge for this service, but the fee is often far cheaper than having to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars to repair damaged orthodontic equipment. Your orthodontist will cover the brackets with wax or a similar material before molding the mouthguard for the ideal fit.
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You will need to get the mouthguard remolded periodically when you wear braces. Once the guard begins to feel uncomfortable or painful when you wear it, that means it’s time to adjust the fit of your mouthguard. Boil and bite mouthguards can be remolded multiple times, but eventually they will wear out, so if you notice that the guard is no longer keeping its shape, it’s time for a replacement.
At GuardLab, we offer dozens of awesomes mouthguard styles, including gold teeth mouthguards and custom design mouthguards. Whether you just want a basic design or a pro-level mouthguard, we’ve got you covered with our versatile and affordable options. All of our mouthguards are proudly made here in the USA, and we also offer a custom wholesale programs for teams and gyms looking to buy in bulk. Order from us today and join the mouthguard revolution!