How to Clean your Mouth Guard Properly

How to Clean Mouth Guard - Soak the night guard in distilled white vinegar for at least 30 minutes. After soaking, rinse the night guard

How to Clean Mouth Guard

In this article, you will learn how to clean your night guards (aka mouth guard) daily and naturally. The mouth guards are an important piece of equipment for athletes and individuals who grind their teeth at night. Over time, however, they can become dirty and filled with bacteria. Regular cleaning is crucial to maintain the hygienic and proper function of the mouth guard.

Below are some effective ways to clean your mouth guard:

Why you Should Clean your Mouth Guard?

Maintaining a clean and hygienic mouthguard is essential for protecting your oral health. Below are a few reasons why you should clean your mouth guard on a regular basis:

  • Prevent bacteria and plaque build-up: Just like your teeth, your mouthguard can accumulate plaque and bacteria over time. If not cleaned properly, these harmful microorganisms can lead to tooth decay, gum disease, and bad breath.
  • Improve the fit and comfort of the mouth guard: A dirty mouthguard can cause discomfort and may not fit as well as a clean one. Cleaning it regularly will help to maintain the shape of the mouth guard and ensure that it fits comfortably in your mouth.
  • Extending the life of the mouthguard: A dirty, smelly mouth guard is not only uncomfortable, but it can also cause the material to degrade faster. Regular cleaning helps to prolong the life of your mouth guard.
  • Avoiding the spread of germs: A dirty mouth guard can harbor germs and bacteria that can be transferred to others. Cleaning your mouthguard regularly helps to prevent the spread of germs.

How to Clean a Mouth Guard Daily

Use a mild, alcohol-free soap to avoid damaging your mouth guard. You’ll also need a toothbrush for this method. Rinse your mouth guard in cool water, apply a small amount of soap to your mouth guard and gently brush with the toothbrush. Rinse off and let your mouthguard air dry.

According to Dr. Mclee Tembo you can as well clean a mouth guard with toothpaste, just follow these steps:

  1. Rinse the mouth guard thoroughly with cool water to remove any debris or saliva.
  2. Squeeze a pea-sized amount of toothpaste onto the mouth guard and use a toothbrush to scrub all surfaces.
  3. Rinse the mouth guard thoroughly with cool water to remove any toothpaste residue.
  4. Dry the mouth guard thoroughly with a clean towel or let it air dry.
  5. Store the mouthguard in a clean, dry place.

It is important to use a mild toothpaste, as some toothpastes contain abrasive ingredients that can damage the mouth guard. It is also important to clean your mouth guard regularly, as bacteria can build up on the surface and cause odor, discoloration, and potential health problems.

It’s always recommended to check the manufacturer’s instructions, as some mouth guard materials may not be compatible with toothpaste, and can be damaged with its use.

With regular cleaning and proper care, your mouth guard can last for years and continue to provide the protection you need.

How to Clean Mouth Guard Naturally

Luckily, there are several natural ways to clean your mouth guard and ensure it stays hygienic for your next use.

Soak in vinegar and water

How to clean night guard vinegar: Mix a solution of equal parts water and white vinegar and soak your mouth guard for about an hour. The acidity of the vinegar helps to break down any bacteria or plaque that may have built up on the surface of the mouth guard.

Use hydrogen peroxide

How to clean mouth guard hydrogen peroxide: Create a solution of equal parts water and hydrogen peroxide and soak your mouth guard for about 15 minutes. Hydrogen peroxide is a natural disinfectant that can kill bacteria and remove stains.

Clean with baking soda

How to clean mouth guard with baking soda: Make a paste with baking soda and water, and use a toothbrush to scrub the surface of the mouth guard. Baking soda is a natural abrasive that can remove dirt and stains.

Use essential oils

Add a few drops of tea tree oil or peppermint oil to a bowl of warm water and soak your mouth guard for 15-20 minutes. Both oils have natural antimicrobial properties that can kill bacteria and freshen the smell of your mouth guard.

After using any of the above methods, rinse your mouth guard thoroughly with water to remove any remaining cleaning solution and bacteria.

Always remember:

  • Clean brush and floss your teeth before wearing the guard.
  • If your night guard is torn you have to go to your dentist in order to make a new one.

How to clean night guard naturally

Soak the night guard in distilled white vinegar for at least 30 minutes. After soaking, rinse the night guard and the bowl with water. Then soak the night guard in hydrogen peroxide for at least 30 more minutes. Once finished, rinse with water and allow the night guard to dry completely.

What does vinegar do for night guard?

It also has some disinfecting power and can kill off bacteria. To clean your night guard with vinegar, mix together one part vinegar and one part water and put the night guard into the mixture. Let it soak for about 30 minutes, then remove and rinse off.

Can you clean a night guard with baking soda and vinegar?

If you need to give mouth guards a deeper clean, you can also soak them in a denture soak or alcohol-free mouthwash. If you prefer to use home ingredients, you can also use a solution of white vinegar or baking soda with water. This will remove any surface build up and disinfect the mouth guard.

How to remove calcium buildup on night guard?

Soaking your mouth guard periodically will also help to reduce bacteria buildup and you can do it in several different ways. Or for a deep clean, soak it in vinegar for 30 minutes and then rinse it with water. Then soak it in hydrogen peroxide for 30 minutes and rinse with water.

Difference between Night Guards and Mouth Guards

Bruxism is common teeth grinding and clenching problem. To prevent this habit from damaging the teeth, dentists usually recommend a dental night guard or a dental mouth guard against their patients.

But what is the difference between a dental night guard and a dental mouth guard? Can they serve the same purpose? Can they be used for the same dental problem?

Well, firstly, they are made of different materials and serve different purposes. While a night guard is worn when the person sleeps to prevent teeth grinding, a mouth guard is used by athletes and sportsman to protect their teeth and keep them from accidents during a game, especially in contact sports.

The night guard is made of a thin yet strong material. The size and thickness of the night guard are made in a way that while protecting the teeth, the night guard also allows the person to get undisturbed sleep as it not uncomfortable inside the mouth. The night guard can withstand your teeth grinding while you sleep.

On the other hand, the mouth guard is made with a thicker yet softer material, which can absorb high-intensity shocks and impacts when the player falls on his face or collides with other players. The sharp and sudden shock is often strong enough to damage the teeth and this is exactly what the mouth guard is used for.

Mouth guards can also be dyed in a different color which means you can get one in your favorite color. Some teams have made mouth guards a part of their uniform with the same color and even logos imprinted on them.

Both the guards are supposed to protect your teeth but different ways and different situations. Therefore, talk to your dentist if you suffer from bruxism or participate in contact sports about the best option for protecting your teeth.