why do mouthguards have straps

why do mouthguards have straps

Why Do Mouthguards Have Straps?

Mouthguards are a crucial piece of equipment for athletes who play contact sports. They protect the teeth, gums, and jaw from injury, and can even prevent concussions. However, not all mouthguards are created equal. Some have straps that attach to the helmet or headgear, while others do not. So, why do mouthguards have straps?

1. Stability

The primary reason for mouthguards having straps is stability. When an athlete wears a mouthguard without straps, it can shift around in their mouth during play. This can be distracting and even dangerous, as the athlete may accidentally swallow the mouthguard or choke on it. Straps keep the mouthguard securely in place, ensuring that it provides maximum protection without getting in the way.

Additionally, a mouthguard that stays in place is more effective at preventing dental injuries. If a mouthguard slips out of position, it may not be able to absorb the impact of a blow to the face. Straps help to keep the mouthguard in the correct position, reducing the risk of injury.

2. Comfort

While some athletes find straps uncomfortable, others prefer them to a loose-fitting mouthguard. Straps can help to distribute the pressure of the mouthguard more evenly, reducing the risk of sore spots or irritation. Additionally, a mouthguard that is securely attached to the helmet or headgear can feel more stable and less obtrusive than one that is loose.

3. Hygiene

Mouthguards that have straps are easier to keep clean than those without. When an athlete removes their mouthguard between plays, they can simply clip it onto their helmet or headgear using the straps. This keeps the mouthguard off the ground and away from other equipment, reducing the risk of contamination. Additionally, straps can help to keep the mouthguard from getting lost or misplaced, reducing the need for frequent replacements.

4. Compliance

Some sports leagues require athletes to wear mouthguards with straps. This is often the case in youth sports, where safety regulations are stricter. By wearing a mouthguard with straps, athletes can ensure that they are in compliance with the rules of their league or organization.

5. Customization

Mouthguards with straps can be customized to fit an athlete’s specific needs. For example, a mouthguard can be designed to fit over braces or other dental work, with straps that keep it securely in place. Additionally, straps can be adjusted for a snugger or looser fit, depending on the athlete’s preferences.

why do mouthguards have straps

6. Versatility

Mouthguards with straps can be used in a variety of sports, including football, hockey, lacrosse, and more. The straps can be attached to different types of helmets or headgear, making them a versatile option for athletes who play multiple sports.


While not all mouthguards have straps, they can provide a number of benefits for athletes who wear them. Straps can improve stability, comfort, hygiene, compliance, customization, and versatility. Whether an athlete chooses to wear a mouthguard with or without straps is ultimately a matter of personal preference, but it’s important to consider the potential advantages and disadvantages of each option.

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