Athletic Mouth Protectors

Experts in sports equipment reinstated and revised a key ASTM International standard for athletic mouth protectors (F697). The standard covers the care and use of mouth guards used to protect mouths and teeth in sports ranging from hockey to football.

Christopher Dennison, member of Committee F08 on Sports Equipment, Playing Surfaces and Facilities, notes that the revised standard provides guidance on using mouth guards, how to care for them, and when to replace them.

"The standard allows users to understand the types of mouth guards, how they should fit into an athlete's teeth, under what circumstances a mouth guard should be replaced, and how to clean a mouth guard," says Dennison, director of undergraduate biomedical engineering and an assistant professor in mechanical engineering, University of Alberta. "If a trainer or other professional were tasked with understanding how to choose and fit a mouth protector – and to recommend to athletes how to care for one – they could refer to F697 as a starting point."

Athletic organizations and governing bodies, athletic training staff, and mouth guard manufacturers all use F697. The committee is planning to develop a performance standard for mouth guards and encourages all interested parties to join in its activities.

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CONTACT Technical Information: Christopher Dennison, Ph.D., University of Alberta • Edmonton, Canada • tel +1.780.492.2425 | ASTM Staff: Joe Koury • tel +1.610.832.9804 | Upcoming Meeting: Nov. 16-18 • November Committee Week • Orlando, Fla.

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