Frequently Asked Questions
Does the FITGuard™ detect concussions?
NO! Concussions are tricky to diagnose, and only a doctor should do that. We know concussions can happen when someone gets hit in the head, but everyone is different (factors like skull thickness and hydration level at the time of impact may even play a role). A mouthguard, even one as amazing as The FITGuard™, CANNOT detect or diagnose concussions.
If the FITGuard™ doesn’t detect concussions, why use it?
We know that concussions can come from head impacts, we also know the CDC found that a large number of concussions remain unreported. Given this, we believe it’s good to know when head impacts occur. The FITGuard™ seeks to alert officials, coaches, athletic trainers, etc… that an impact happened. The goal is for that individual to then interact with the player and perform a proper assessment. The FITGuard™ is designed to call attention to impacts that might be missed by observation alone. Our objective is to prompt an evaluation by a trained professional, with the goal of reducing the risk that an athlete is playing with an unidentified concussion.
I still don’t get it, you’re measuring head impacts, but can’t tell if the impact caused a concussion? Why measure the impact at all then?
For the same reason that people count their steps. Does anyone know how many steps it takes to be healthy? No. However, we do know that taking steps is better than not taking steps. Similarly, we don’t know when an impact causes a concussion, but we know that monitoring how hard, and often, athletes get hit in the head is better than not monitoring how hard, and often, they get hit in the head.
Can anyone wear The FITGuard™?
Not yet. An athlete should have their adult teeth before getting a FITGuard™ (prior to that, their mouth is probably too small). Also, Gary. Gary cannot wear The FITGuard™…he knows why.
Is The FITGuard™ durable? What if an athlete chews on it?
The FITGuard™ has been engineered to last for several seasons and should hold up to the normal wear and tear that an athlete’s mouthguard experiences. The FITGuard™ should also hold up far better than off the shelf, boil-and-bite options. As for chewing, it will likely damage the electronics and break The FITGuard™. If you’ve ever told your child, “This is why we can’t have nice things!” you may want to have a talk with them prior to their first use… just sayin’.
Why is The FITGuard™ custom-made?
A device affixed to the upper-rear molars has demonstrated a strong correlation to the center of gravity (CG) of the brain. In order to maintain tight coupling and retention to those upper-rear molars, each FITGuard™ is custom-made for the user. We found that “boil and bite” mouthguards were too loose & did not provide quality impact data. We do not claim The FITGuard™ represents the CG of the brain, only that we’re displaying the impact measured by, and at the point of, the FITGuard™. However, we do believe the measurements taken by the FITGuard™ are more accurate if the FITGuard™ is snugly attached to the upper-rear molars.
But Team FIT, couldn’t you make a lot more money if you mass produced boil and bite mouthguards?
Yes! It was even mentioned in a meeting once (wasn’t it Gary), but at FIT we are passionate about making athletes safer, without altering the sports themselves. After our lab testing, and some testing with live athletes, we weren’t convinced that a boil and bite mouthguard could offer the same level of accuracy of impact measurement as a custom mouthguard. We’re serious about putting the athlete first, so we prioritized measurement accuracy, comfort, and teeth protection. Plus, the boil and bites are bulky, it shouldn’t sound like you’ve got a mouth full of marbles when you’re trying to communicate with teammates.
If The FITGuard™ is custom made, how do I get a mold of my teeth?
Great question! Insert the camera from your smart phone all the way into the athlete’s mouth…just kidding! There are three options:
- You can use one of our molding kits, The FITKit, to give it a shot at home. We have an instructional video COMING SOON!
- You can visit your dentist if you’re worried about trying on your own (many dentists will do this for a minimal fee, some even for free, but it’s best to ask them first)
- If your child is part of a large enough group, we can plan to show up on site with a teeth-scanner, and skip the molding process entirely.
There are electronic components going into an athlete’s mouth, is that safe?
There is always inherent risk, but our goal is to minimize that risk as much as possible. We’ve done tremendous research into the components we use to reduce the risk as much as possible. We’ve also done a great deal of experimentation on the best, and safest, way to encase those components in the mouthguard. We’ve done impact testing to ensure the components are protected from impacts and have a minimal risk of breaching the plastic of the mouthguard. All of that being said, we will not claim that nothing could possibly go wrong. Rather, we hope we have demonstrated a level of safety that, coupled with the benefits of the FITGuard™, far outweigh the level of risk assumed. Our founding team were our first beta testers and continue to wear FITGuard™s themselves every week, in other words, we wouldn’t ask you to do something we’re not comfortable doing ourselves.
Why should I choose The FITGuard™?
If you’re here, and for some reason you’ve read all the way to the bottom of the FAQs, clearly head-health in sports is important to you. FIT was founded by athletes for athletes. We decided on a mouthguard because we didn’t want to limit anyone from the level of protection offered by The FITGuard™, and we designed The FITGuard™ through years of rigorous testing. Our founding team consists of two lifelong athletes, who are also black belts in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu. In addition to being athletes, we’re also concerned parents ourselves (to FIT’s Chief Cuteness Officers…some of the kids are old enough to hate that title now). In other words, we know athletes and we know concern for our children being athletes. We would not design a product we would not wear onto the mat/field/rink/court/pitch ourselves, or a product that we would not trust our children to wear. We’re passionate about athlete safety, without compromising comfort and communication on the field. Whether you’re looking for yourself, your child, or a team, The FITGuard™ is the right choice for you.