Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith
I did not believe it; I couldn't believe it! Yet, UnderArmour and BiteTech laboratory have created a mouthguard for contact sports that actually enhances an athlete's performance.
As soon as I heard these claims, I said to myself, "I've got to see the research." Low and behold, there is supporting documentation to support the mouthguard:
- Dena P. Garner, Wesley D. Dudgeon, Timothy P. Scheet and Erica J. McDivett (2011).The effects of mouthpiece use on gas exchange parameters during steady-state exercise in college-aged men and women. The Journal of the American Dental Association, 2011;142;1041-1047
- Garner, D.P. and McDivitt, E. (2009). Effects of mouthpiece use on airways Openings Lactate Levels in Healthy College Males. Compendium: A Supplement of Continuing Education in Dentistry, 30(2):9-13.
The primary reason for wearing a mouthguard during contact sports is to protect the oral structures from a direct traumatic blow that could result in tooth avulsion, jaw fracture, tooth displacement/fracture, soft tissue trauma, or nerve injury. Surprisingly, these types of incidents occur frequently.
Beyond this, the UnderArmour mouthguard allows the wearer to breathe more efficiently. During periods of physical exertion, people have a tendency to clench their teeth. Think about tackling someone in football or screaming down a downhill mountain bike course. The mouthguard provides a slight amount of separation of the teeth allowing the wearer to breathe more easily. This slight amount of separation of the teeth also positions the jaw joint so that stresses are not transmitted as forcefully to the base of the skull through the joint, which decreases stress hormones created during physical exertion.
I'll be honest; I never thought that an athletic mouthguard would develop beyond just protecting the teeth. That is why I am so excited about this innovation. 58 Dental is proud to partner with UnderArmour and BiteTech laboratory to offer this innovation to our patients. Now, you too can have the level of protection and performance previously reserved for professional athletes.