It is estimated that around 20 million children participate in sports in America. Unfortunately, a common byproduct of active fun is sports related injuries. It is estimated that 10-20% of sports injuries involve the face and teeth. Therefore, when kids participate in sports where collision and impact with other people or things is possible, choosing to wear a mouthguard, or dental protector, is highly recommended.
Types of Mouth Guards:
There are three types of mouth guards of varying price and comfort:
- Ready-made or stock mouthguard
- Mouth-formed “boil and bite” mouthguard
- Custom-made mouthguard – which are made by a dentist
Each option is different, yet all provide protection. The main thing is that the mouthguard should fit properly, be cleaned regularly and not restrict speech or breathing.
Sports Needing Mouth Protection:
This list of sports where a mouthguard is recommended as essential athletic gear during both practice and competition include the following: acrobatics, basketball, boxing, field hockey, football, gymnastics, handball, ice hockey, lacrosse, martial arts, racquetball, roller hockey, rugby, shot putt, skateboarding, skiing, skydiving, soccer, squash, surfing, volleyball, water polo, weightlifting, and wrestling. Some experts also recommend baseball and softball infielders wear mouth guards to protect their teeth from line drives.
If Dental Injury Occurs:
Should a dental injury occur, do not allow the athlete to return to the game. Immediately contact us at Tahoe Oral Surgery and Implant Center for advice and/or transport them to a dentist or oral surgeon to ensure the best possible outcome. You can also help to prepare yourself by reading our ‘What Do I Do If I Have a Dental Injury’ article.
Summer is upon us which means children will be playing contact and collision sports. Wearing mouth protection can help prevent oral injury and keep your children in the game.