Protective athletic mouthguards: Do they cause harm?

Richard T. Glass, Robert S. Conrad, Charles Rieger Wood, Aric J. Warren, Gerwald A. Kohler, James W. Bullard, Gifty Benson, Judyth M. Gulden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

7 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Protective athletic mouthguards (PAMs) have been worn in competitive sports for more than 100 years. Today, participants in contact and noncontact sports wear PAMs. Hypothesis: Wearing a PAM produces oral injury. Study Type: Case series. Study Design and Methods: Sixty-two Division I football players voluntarily participated in the study. Before the beginning of the season, each player underwent a thorough oral examination, and all abnormal oral findings were photographed (hyperkeratosis, erythema, ulceration, and combinations thereof). At midseason, 14 players were given complete oral examinations, with all abnormal oral findings documented. At season end, all remaining players (n = 53) had complete oral examinations and photographs taken of abnormal oral findings. Results: The preseason examination of 62 players found a total of 85 lesions (1.4 lesions per player) on the gingiva (n = 17), buccal mucosa (n = 60), and palate (n = 8). The 14 midseason players had 28 lesions (2.0 lesions per player) on gingiva (n = 8), buccal mucosa (n = 16), and tongue (n = 4). At season end, the 53 remaining players had 198 lesions (3.7 per player) on the gingiva (n = 96), buccal mucosa (n = 79), tongue (n = 18), and palate (n = 5). In addition, the lesion intensity scores progressively increased over the season. Because the palate did not come into direct contact with the PAM, it was used as an internal control. Conclusion: The wearing of a PAM may increase the number and intensity of oral mucosal injuries, which may cause localized soft tissue reactions such as hyperkeratosis, erythema, and ulceration. Clinical Relevance: Because the PAM reduces tooth injury but may cause oral lesions, it should be sanitized daily and changed regularly and replaced whenever it becomes sharp and jagged or when the athlete develops an irritation in the mouth.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)411-415
Number of pages5
JournalSports Health
Volume1
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2009

Fingerprint

Sports
Oral Diagnosis
Palate
Mouth Mucosa
Gingiva
Erythema
Tongue
Tooth Injuries
Football
Wounds and Injuries
Athletes
Mouth

Keywords

  • Disease transmission
  • Microorganisms
  • Mouthguard care
  • Oral infections
  • Protective athletic mouthguard
  • Systemic infections

Cite this

Glass, R. T., Conrad, R. S., Wood, C. R., Warren, A. J., Kohler, G. A., Bullard, J. W., ... Gulden, J. M. (2009). Protective athletic mouthguards: Do they cause harm? Sports Health, 1(5), 411-415. https://doi.org/10.1177/1941738109341441
Glass, Richard T. ; Conrad, Robert S. ; Wood, Charles Rieger ; Warren, Aric J. ; Kohler, Gerwald A. ; Bullard, James W. ; Benson, Gifty ; Gulden, Judyth M. / Protective athletic mouthguards : Do they cause harm?. In: Sports Health. 2009 ; Vol. 1, No. 5. pp. 411-415.
@article{49de20d8507644b08e34050e3df713ec,
title = "Protective athletic mouthguards: Do they cause harm?",
abstract = "Background: Protective athletic mouthguards (PAMs) have been worn in competitive sports for more than 100 years. Today, participants in contact and noncontact sports wear PAMs. Hypothesis: Wearing a PAM produces oral injury. Study Type: Case series. Study Design and Methods: Sixty-two Division I football players voluntarily participated in the study. Before the beginning of the season, each player underwent a thorough oral examination, and all abnormal oral findings were photographed (hyperkeratosis, erythema, ulceration, and combinations thereof). At midseason, 14 players were given complete oral examinations, with all abnormal oral findings documented. At season end, all remaining players (n = 53) had complete oral examinations and photographs taken of abnormal oral findings. Results: The preseason examination of 62 players found a total of 85 lesions (1.4 lesions per player) on the gingiva (n = 17), buccal mucosa (n = 60), and palate (n = 8). The 14 midseason players had 28 lesions (2.0 lesions per player) on gingiva (n = 8), buccal mucosa (n = 16), and tongue (n = 4). At season end, the 53 remaining players had 198 lesions (3.7 per player) on the gingiva (n = 96), buccal mucosa (n = 79), tongue (n = 18), and palate (n = 5). In addition, the lesion intensity scores progressively increased over the season. Because the palate did not come into direct contact with the PAM, it was used as an internal control. Conclusion: The wearing of a PAM may increase the number and intensity of oral mucosal injuries, which may cause localized soft tissue reactions such as hyperkeratosis, erythema, and ulceration. Clinical Relevance: Because the PAM reduces tooth injury but may cause oral lesions, it should be sanitized daily and changed regularly and replaced whenever it becomes sharp and jagged or when the athlete develops an irritation in the mouth.",
keywords = "Disease transmission, Microorganisms, Mouthguard care, Oral infections, Protective athletic mouthguard, Systemic infections",
author = "Glass, {Richard T.} and Conrad, {Robert S.} and Wood, {Charles Rieger} and Warren, {Aric J.} and Kohler, {Gerwald A.} and Bullard, {James W.} and Gifty Benson and Gulden, {Judyth M.}",
year = "2009",
month = "9",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1177/1941738109341441",
language = "English",
volume = "1",
pages = "411--415",
journal = "Sports Health",
issn = "1941-7381",
publisher = "Sage Periodicals Press",
number = "5",

}

Glass, RT, Conrad, RS, Wood, CR, Warren, AJ, Kohler, GA, Bullard, JW, Benson, G & Gulden, JM 2009, 'Protective athletic mouthguards: Do they cause harm?', Sports Health, vol. 1, no. 5, pp. 411-415. https://doi.org/10.1177/1941738109341441

Protective athletic mouthguards : Do they cause harm? / Glass, Richard T.; Conrad, Robert S.; Wood, Charles Rieger; Warren, Aric J.; Kohler, Gerwald A.; Bullard, James W.; Benson, Gifty; Gulden, Judyth M.

In: Sports Health, Vol. 1, No. 5, 01.09.2009, p. 411-415.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Protective athletic mouthguards

T2 - Do they cause harm?

AU - Glass, Richard T.

AU - Conrad, Robert S.

AU - Wood, Charles Rieger

AU - Warren, Aric J.

AU - Kohler, Gerwald A.

AU - Bullard, James W.

AU - Benson, Gifty

AU - Gulden, Judyth M.

PY - 2009/9/1

Y1 - 2009/9/1

N2 - Background: Protective athletic mouthguards (PAMs) have been worn in competitive sports for more than 100 years. Today, participants in contact and noncontact sports wear PAMs. Hypothesis: Wearing a PAM produces oral injury. Study Type: Case series. Study Design and Methods: Sixty-two Division I football players voluntarily participated in the study. Before the beginning of the season, each player underwent a thorough oral examination, and all abnormal oral findings were photographed (hyperkeratosis, erythema, ulceration, and combinations thereof). At midseason, 14 players were given complete oral examinations, with all abnormal oral findings documented. At season end, all remaining players (n = 53) had complete oral examinations and photographs taken of abnormal oral findings. Results: The preseason examination of 62 players found a total of 85 lesions (1.4 lesions per player) on the gingiva (n = 17), buccal mucosa (n = 60), and palate (n = 8). The 14 midseason players had 28 lesions (2.0 lesions per player) on gingiva (n = 8), buccal mucosa (n = 16), and tongue (n = 4). At season end, the 53 remaining players had 198 lesions (3.7 per player) on the gingiva (n = 96), buccal mucosa (n = 79), tongue (n = 18), and palate (n = 5). In addition, the lesion intensity scores progressively increased over the season. Because the palate did not come into direct contact with the PAM, it was used as an internal control. Conclusion: The wearing of a PAM may increase the number and intensity of oral mucosal injuries, which may cause localized soft tissue reactions such as hyperkeratosis, erythema, and ulceration. Clinical Relevance: Because the PAM reduces tooth injury but may cause oral lesions, it should be sanitized daily and changed regularly and replaced whenever it becomes sharp and jagged or when the athlete develops an irritation in the mouth.

AB - Background: Protective athletic mouthguards (PAMs) have been worn in competitive sports for more than 100 years. Today, participants in contact and noncontact sports wear PAMs. Hypothesis: Wearing a PAM produces oral injury. Study Type: Case series. Study Design and Methods: Sixty-two Division I football players voluntarily participated in the study. Before the beginning of the season, each player underwent a thorough oral examination, and all abnormal oral findings were photographed (hyperkeratosis, erythema, ulceration, and combinations thereof). At midseason, 14 players were given complete oral examinations, with all abnormal oral findings documented. At season end, all remaining players (n = 53) had complete oral examinations and photographs taken of abnormal oral findings. Results: The preseason examination of 62 players found a total of 85 lesions (1.4 lesions per player) on the gingiva (n = 17), buccal mucosa (n = 60), and palate (n = 8). The 14 midseason players had 28 lesions (2.0 lesions per player) on gingiva (n = 8), buccal mucosa (n = 16), and tongue (n = 4). At season end, the 53 remaining players had 198 lesions (3.7 per player) on the gingiva (n = 96), buccal mucosa (n = 79), tongue (n = 18), and palate (n = 5). In addition, the lesion intensity scores progressively increased over the season. Because the palate did not come into direct contact with the PAM, it was used as an internal control. Conclusion: The wearing of a PAM may increase the number and intensity of oral mucosal injuries, which may cause localized soft tissue reactions such as hyperkeratosis, erythema, and ulceration. Clinical Relevance: Because the PAM reduces tooth injury but may cause oral lesions, it should be sanitized daily and changed regularly and replaced whenever it becomes sharp and jagged or when the athlete develops an irritation in the mouth.

KW - Disease transmission

KW - Microorganisms

KW - Mouthguard care

KW - Oral infections

KW - Protective athletic mouthguard

KW - Systemic infections

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=80051757775&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1177/1941738109341441

DO - 10.1177/1941738109341441

M3 - Article

AN - SCOPUS:80051757775

VL - 1

SP - 411

EP - 415

JO - Sports Health

JF - Sports Health

SN - 1941-7381

IS - 5

ER -