With more than four billion fans and 260 million players globally, football is without a doubt the most popular sport in the world. But with knees and elbows always on the move and balls that can fly in excess of 60km/h, it can also be an incredibly physical one.

We wanted to take some time to put a spotlight on mouthguards in football and explore what you can do to keep your mouth protected at all times:

Why Should Soccer Players Wear Mouthguards?

Mouthguards have been used throughout the twentieth century, first by boxers from the 1920s onwards and then American football players starting in the 1950s. Mouthguard acceptance and usage among athletes in non-contact sports like football, however, has lagged behind.

Check out our sports page to learn why football players need to wear mouthguards and how they can choose one suited for their sport.

How Do Mouthguards Keep Players Safe?

Think of a mouthguard as a shock absorber for your mouth and teeth.

When you get hit in the face during a game, that blow sends shockwaves rippling through your teeth, jaw, and skull. Without a mouthguard, there’s nothing in place to block or minimize the intensity of the blow. Mouthguards are engineered to capture that energy, diffuse it as they contract, and disperse it as they expand again.

How Do I Find the Right Mouthguard?

In addition to shock-blocking technology, independent resistance and materials testing, and certifications, make sure you pay attention to how well your mouthguard fits:

  • A properly fitted mouthguard won’t make it difficult for you to breathe or speak.
  • If you can easily loosen your mouthguard with your tongue or need to clench your teeth to make sure your mouthguard stays in place, it’s not the right fit for you. You’ll find yourself adjusting it constantly unless it sits tightly against the upper teeth.
  • Your mouthguard shouldn’t make you gag. If it does, it’s probably sitting too much on your soft palate (the back of the roof of your mouth). Ideally your mouthguard should end somewhere between your first and second molars.
  • If you have braces, don’t forget that you still need to wear a braces-compatible mouthguard in order to protect both your mouth and the braces themselves.

If you’re using a mouth-adapted mouthguard, make sure you follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to achieve a proper fit. Always follow the rules for your specific product. The general principles are the same for BOIL & BITE® styles (they need to be boiled, shaped, and cooled), but the details like how long you need to immerse them in boiling water vary.

Downloadable fitting instructions (PDFs) for all Makura mouthguards are available on our website in five languages: English, Español, Français, Deutsch, and Italiano. Click here to access them.

Ultimately the key to keeping your mouth protected while playing sports is to ensure you’re wearing a high-quality, properly fitted mouthguard.

At Makura Sport, our mission is simple: to provide you with mouthguards that exceed expectations and make us the protection of choice for athletes around the world. Contact us today to learn more!

Read more about safety in sport from Makura:

Makura Sport Team