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Endod Dent Traumatol. 1999 Aug;15(4):157-63.

Experimental comparative study of various mouthguards.

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Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, University of Tübingen, Germany.


The aim of this study was to evaluate the mechanical and physical properties of several standard size commercially available mouthguards. For the purpose of objective testing, a special study model, which the various gum shield devices could be fitted onto, was developed to record tooth deflection caused by impact forces induced by a pendulum ram impact testing machine. The data measured on teeth provided with various gum shield devices were correlated with those of unprotected teeth; this enabled the individual cushioning effects of the respective devices and their specific force conduction to be evaluated. Using mouthguards considerably diminishes the deflection of the teeth subjected to stress in comparison with the row of unprotected teeth. In addition, force is transmitted to the adjacent teeth all the way to the distal regions of the row of teeth. The individual cushioning effects are directly correlated to the thickness of the material; the force distribution is determined by the rigidity of the gum shield device. The devices examined showed considerable differences with regard to force distribution and dimensioning. The study showed that this was due to the thickness of the materials, the manufacturing process and the composition of the materials of the devices examined. In comparison to laboratory-produced devices of similar material thickness, the devices that were designed to be fitted by the user achieved significantly poorer results as regards both cushioning properties and dissipation of exerted forces.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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