Skip to main content

Effects of a neuromuscular dentistry-designed mouthguard on muscular endurance and anaerobic power

  • Shawn M. Arent (a1), Jennifer McKenna (a1) and Devon L. Golem (a2)

Athletes of various sports are required to utilize mouthguards during practice and competitions for protection against orofacial and dental injuries, regardless of the effects on performance. Recent advances in neuromuscular dentistry have led to the development of a mouthguard touted also to enhance the performance through jaw realignment. The purpose of this study was to compare the effects of a neuromuscular dentistry-based mouthguard to a standard, custom-fitted mouthguard (CFM) on muscular endurance, anaerobic power and anaerobic capacity in competitive athletes. Professional and Division I college athletes (n = 22, Mweight = 86.2 ± 3.1 kg) participated in this double-blind, crossover study. Subjects were randomly assigned to order of use of either the experimental (Pure Power Mouthguard (PPM)) or the traditional CFM. Subjects completed two separate sessions in which they completed three performance tests, which included vertical jump (VJ), bench press (BP) and a 30 s Wingate anaerobic test (WAnT)+eight 10 s intervals, while wearing the assigned mouthguard. Significantly better performance was found for PPM compared with CFM for VJ (67.6+9.4 cm vs. 65.3+8.6 cm; P = 0.003), 30 s WAnT peak power (11.6 ± 1.7 W kg− 1vs. 11.1 ± 1.5 W kg− 1, P = 0.038), average peak power for WAnT+intervals (10.6 ± 1.4 W kg− 1vs. 10.1 ± 1.2 W kg− 1, P = 0.025) and average mean power for WAnT+intervals (9.0 ± 1.1 W kg− 1vs. 8.7 ± 1.0 W kg− 1, P = 0.034). There were no significant differences for either BP or 30 s WAnT mean power (P>0.48). Compared with a CFM, a neuromuscular dentistry-based mouthguard appears to enhance peak power output, performance and repeated maximal efforts. When required to wear a mouthguard, athletes may benefit from wearing a neuromuscular dentistry-designed mouthguard compared with a CFM.

Corresponding author
*Corresponding author:
Hide All
1[American Dental Association] Council on Access, Prevention and Interprofessional Relations, Council on Scientific Affairs, (2006). Using mouthguards to reduce the incidence and severity of sports-related oral injuries. Journal of the American Dental Association 137: 17121720.
2Fasciglione D, Persic R, Pohl Y and Filippi A (2007). Dental injuries in inline skating – level of information and prevention. Dental Traumatology 23: 143148.
3Knapik JJ, Marshall SW, Lee RB, Darakjy SS, Jones SB, Mitchener TA, et al. (2007). Mouthguards in sport activities: history, physical properties and injury prevention effectiveness. Sports Medicine 37: 117144.
4Kumamoto DP and Maeda Y (2004). A literature review of sports-related orofacial trauma. General Dentistry 52: 270280.
5Low D, Summii T, Swain MV, Ishigami K and Takeda T (2002). Instrumented indentation characterization of mouth-guard materials. Dental Materials 18: 211215.
6von Arx T, Flury R, Tschan J, Buergin W and Geiser T (2008). Exercise capacity in athletes with mouthguards. International Journal of Sports Medicine 29: 435438.
7Bracco P, Deregibus A and Piscetta R (2004). Effects of different jaw relations on postural stability in human subjects. Neuroscience Letters 356: 228230.
8Sakaguchi K, Mehta N, Abdallah E, Forgione A, Hirayama H, Kawasaki T, et al. (2007). Examination of the relationship between mandibular position and body posture. The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice 25: 237249.
9Chalmers DJ (1998). Mouthguards: protection for the mouth in rugby union. Sports Medicine 25: 339349.
10Duarte-Pereira DMV, del Rey-Santamaria M, Javierre-Garces C, Barbany-Cairo J, Paredes-Garcia J, Valmaseda-Castellon E, et al. (2008). Wearability and physiological effects of custom-fitted vs self-adapted mouthguards. Dental Traumatology 24: 439442.
11Bourdin M, Brunet-Patru I, Hager P, Allard Y, Hager J, Lacour J, et al. (2006). Influence of maxillary mouthguards on physiological parameters. Medicine and Science of Sports and Exercise 38: 15001504.
12Francis KT and Brasher J (1991). Physiological effects of wearing mouthguards. British Journal of Sports Medicine 25: 227231.
13Kececi AD, Cetin C, Eroglu E and Baydar ML (2005). Do custom-made mouthguards have negative effects on aerobic performance capacity of athletes? Dental Traumatology 21: 276280.
14Abduljabbar T, Mehta N, Forgione A, Clark E, Kronman J, Munsat T, et al. (1997). Effect of increased maxillomandibular relationship on isometric strength in TMD patients with loss of vertical dimension of occlusion. The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice 15: 5767.
15al-Abbasi H, Mehta N, Forgione A and Clark R (1999). The effect of vertical dimension and mandibular position on isometric strength of the cervical flexors. The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice 17: 8592.
16Chakfa A, Mehta N, Forgione A, Al-Badawi E, Lobo Lobo S and Zawawi K (2002). The effect of stepwise increases in vertical dimension of occlusion on isometric strength of cervical flexors and deltoid muscles in nonsymptomatic females. The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice 20: 264273.
17Abdallah E, Mehta N, Forgione A and Clark R (2004). Affecting upper extremity strength by changing maxillomandibular vertical dimension in deep bite subjects. The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice 22: 268275.
18Cetin C, Kececi A, Erdogan A and Baydar M (2009). Influence of custom-made mouth guards on strength, speed and anaerobic performance of taekwondo athletes. Dental Traumatology 25: 272276.
19Mahony D (2002). An introduction to neuromuscular dentistry. The Functional Orthodontist 19: 2427.
20Cooper BC (1996). The role of bioelectronic instruments in documenting and managing temporomandibular disorders. Journal of the American Dental Association 127: 16111614.
21Barfield JP, Sells PD, Rowe DA and Hannigan-Downs K (2002). Practice effect on the Wingate anaerobic test. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 16: 472473.
22Hopkins WG, Schabort EJ and Hawley JA (2001). Reliability of power in physical performance tests. Sports Medicine 31: 211234.
23Leard JS, Cirillo MA, Katsnelson E, Kimiatek DA, Miller TW, Trebincevic K, et al. (2007). Validity of two alternative systems for measuring vertical jump height. The Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research 21: 12961299.
24Üçok K, Gökbel H and Okudan N (2005). The load for the Wingate test: according to the body weight or lean body mass. European Journal of General Medicine 2: 1013.
25Bar-Or O (1987). The Wingate anaerobic test: an update on methodology, reliability, and validity. Sports Medicine 4: 381394.
26Nakagawa S (2004). A farewell to Bonferroni: the problems of low statistical power and publication bias. Behavioral Ecology 15: 10441045.
27Gelb H, Mehta NR and Forgione AG (1996). The relationship between jaw posture and muscular strength in sports dentistry: a reappraisal. The Journal of Craniomandibular Practice 14: 320325.
28Delaney JS and Montgomery DL (2005). Effect on non-custom bimolar mouthguards on peak ventilation in ice hockey players. Clinical Journal of Sport Medicine 15: 154157.
29DeYoung AK, Robinson E and Godwin WC (1994). Comparing comfort and wearability: custom-made vs. self-adapted mouthguards. Journal of the American Dental Association 125: 11121118.
30Scott J, Burke FJ and Watts DC (1994). A review of dental injuries and the use of mouthguards in contact team sports. British Dental Journal 176: 310314.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Comparative Exercise Physiology
  • ISSN: 1755-2540
  • EISSN: 1755-2559
  • URL: /core/journals/comparative-exercise-physiology
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 7
Total number of PDF views: 23 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 390 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 16th January 2018. This data will be updated every 24 hours.