Do you have to wear a mouthguard in MMA (Mixed Martial Arts) and do MMA fighters wear mouthguards?
You should always wear a mouthguard when practicing MMA. A mouthguard is supposed to protect your teeth while sparring or competing in MMA tournaments.
In this post, we will go through the different reasons why you definitely should wear a mouthguard, as well as some instructions for choosing the right mouthguard for MMA.
Let’s get started!
Do you need a mouthguard for MMA?
You should always wear a mouthguard for MMA when sparring or competing. A mouthguard is cheap insurance to increase the likelihood of you walking out of the gym with all your teeth still attached to your mouth.
Not only can mouthguard save you hundreds if not thousands of dollars in dental bills, but it also softens the hits you take to the face.
Getting punched in the teeth can be extremely painful. Wearing a mouthguard will distribute that force into a larger surface area, making it less painful overall.
Wearing a mouthguard can also keep you standing for longer. If you do not wear a mouthguard, you can be knocked out a lot easier, due to the concentrated force towards just one point in your face.
Also, the rules of MMA fights typically require participants to wear mouthguards.
Do MMA fighters wear mouthguards?
MMA fighters are required to wear mouthguards when competing. It is also highly recommended to wear a mouthguard while sparring and training, where you might be hit in the face.
Even though MMA competitions can be dangerous, a mouthguard is a cheap way to make it a little bit safer.
It gives you an easier mind when you know, that at least your teeth are safer than without a mouthguard.
What does a mouthguard do in MMA?
There are a lot of benefits to wearing a mouthguard. Here are the 6 reasons to wear a mouthguard for MMA.
- Wearing a mouthguard will soften the hit to your teeth
- A mouthguard can protect your teeth
- Mouthguards can protect your jaw
- Wearing a mouthguard can prevent you from getting knocked out
- Mouthguards can help save your lips so your teeth won’t get punched through them
- Mouthguards can also soften the blow to your opponent’s knuckles.
How to choose a mouthguard for MMA?
When it comes to choosing a mouthguard, see if your gym has any set rules for them. That might be the color, material, or even brand that they recommend.
As others what they recommend and do your decision based on those and your own research and preferences.
1. Get a mouthguard that is somewhat your size.
Getting a mouthguard that is close to your mouth size will make the forming and wearing it more comfortable.
Some mouthguards have sizes, while others are one-size. Go as close as you can by eye, but don’t worry. You can modify it as you start to form it for your teeth, I have a few tips for that.
If you find your mouthguard to be too long, meaning it goes too far to the back of your mouth, you can cut pieces off the end.
Do not cut too much, but taking small fractions off just with scissors or something can make wearing it more pleasant.
The cutting edges will be “sharp” after you have cut them. What I did is I melted the sharp edges with a lighter, just a little bit so the edges would round up. A proper wash afterward and that was it.
2. Get a mouthguard with tame colors
Something like black or white will never be out of style. Getting a mouthguard with a Batman image on the front can be a bit too much for some gyms.
Not that there is nothing wrong with those, but if you do not want to stand out of the crowd, go with something a little bit more traditional.
3. A mouthguard does not have to cover your lower teeth
I have seen mouthguards that “protect” both the upper and lower teeth in your mouth. I don’t really know what those are designed for, but they are really unpleasant to wear. (Trust me, I bought one years ago).
Getting a mouthguard that is only on your upper teeth will likely do the trick. They are the most common models of mouthguards. Of course, they do have differences as well, but generally, I would not recommend getting one that also protects your lower teeth.
Most people have their upper teeth in the front. Having a mouthguard that focuses on the upper teeth will likely do the job.
4. Get a deformable mouthguard
I mentioned this before, but I want to make sure you don’t get those one-size mouthguards that can not be formed according to your teeth.
Deformable mouthguards will be molded around your teeth, making sure it fits perfectly for your precious set of teeth. May they stay intact for a long time.
In conclusion, you should always wear a mouthguard while sparring or competing in MMA. Also, if the training you are doing feels like it could be safer with a mouthguard on, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Here is a post about mouthguards for BJJ.
Hopefully this was helpful, have a nice day!