Which Sports Actually Need Mouthguards? The Answer May Surprise You



How important is a nice smile? Very, considering that adult teeth don’t grow back. That’s why athletes need to take special care of their teeth, especially when playing sports in games or even in practice. Not every sport requires wearing mouthguards even though dental damage is the most common injury in sports. Did you know that there are sports that need mouthguards but that don’t require them? The answers may surprise you.

Combat Sports

Those playing sports such as kickboxing, MMA, and taekwondo should wear mouthguards. In most cases, mouthguards are required, but this is not always the case. Because these sports can be dangerous, mouthguards should be worn at all times, including during sparring because facial hits in sports like these are allowed. According to Murfreesboro Family Dentistry, athletes who wear mouthguards are more than 80 percent less likely to suffer dental injuries. The more protective gear, the safer the participants will be.

Grappling Sports

Sports like jiu-jitsu, judo, and wrestling are different from combat sports since they require you being in closer proximity to your opponent. There are times where due to the closeness, wounds such as facial injuries and dental injuries are very likely to occur. Even though facial hits are not allowed, they can happen by accident. Due to the high probability of injuries, protective gear is needed.

Contact Sports

According to Stanford Children's Health, the highest rates of injury occur in contact sports. One of the most common contact sports is football, but sports such as rugby and hockey are also classified as contact sports. With the rise of concussion awareness, the more protection players can have, the better. Even though mouthguards are required, it’s best to make sure that they are being worn at all times. Since players are consistently hitting each other, quality mouthguards are very important.

Non-Contact Sports

As shocking as it may be, non-contact sports such as volleyball and soccer should require mouthguards. In these types of sports, players can be hit by balls or run into other players. Any activity that involves the risk of running into an opponent or being hit by a wayward object should require its players to wear mouthguards. However, not all non-contact sports need protective items like mouthguards. Activities such as golf, tennis, and running do not need a mouthguard for protection. It’s better to be safe than sorry. It’s always best to wear protective goggles and a mouthguard whenever you are participating in sports or any activities involving the possibility of falling on your face or of being hit by an object. That way, you can play safe.

Just like it’s important to take care of your teeth while playing sports, it’s also important to care for your joints. Read more about how to care for sprained joints if you get injured!

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