Athletes who will participate in sports this fall and winter can have a free, customized mouth guard made for them during the School of Dentistry’s annual Mouth Guard Clinic on July 29.

Athletes ages 5 and older, including those who wear braces, are invited to be fitted for a mouth guard, which helps protect their teeth and mouth from injuries due to sports contact.

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Dental and dental hygiene students, supervised by clinical faculty members, will make mouth guards for the first 120 athletes who register on a first-come, first-served basis.

Registration is from 8-10:30 a.m. on the second floor of the School of Dentistry, 1011 N. University Ave. A parent or guardian must accompany children under 18 years old. The fitting procedure takes approximately one hour. The mouth guards come in a variety of colors.

A customized mouth guard is an important piece of equipment for athletes of all ages, said Kenneth May, associate professor of dentistry.

“Custom mouth guards made by our dental and dental hygiene students are comfortable to wear and more likely to be used than one purchased at a store,” he said. A properly fitted mouth guard helps protect teeth and minimize injuries to the mouth as a result of a fall or other contact to the head or body, May said.

Mouth guard clinic participants can park free in the Fletcher Street parking ramp on the north side of the School of Dentistry by taking the “up” ramp to the plaza level.