The Importance of Mouthguards During Summer Sports

shutterstock_151790942Summer is here once again. It is an exciting time of the year for young children who have a few blessed months to enjoy freedom from school. Summer sports clinics are in full swing and make for a healthy diversion. Sports teach children discipline and helps strengthen their muscles as they have been cooped up most hours, learning.

Summer Sports Injuries

While summer sports helps ward off childhood obesity, we are all aware that there are unintentional injuries that may occur. Sports injuries are common and roughly 36 to 40% of children who are enrolled in summer sports experience minor to major injuries.

According to the ADA about 10 to 20% of these injuries are maxillofacial ones. This pertains to injuries related to the face or jaw. These injuries can lead to permanent damage to the orofacial structures. This may include tooth fractures involving the crown and/or root. Teeth may get knocked out as well. Tooth avulsion can be tricky to fix as not all teeth that get knocked out can be re-implanted. Tooth luxation is another concern. This occurs when the tooth stays in its socket but is in the wrong position.

Invest in a Mouthguard

Even professional athletes wear mouthguards to protect their teeth from blunt force. Mouthguards can cushion the impact to a significant degree thereby lessening the chance of major oral injuries that are common in sports.

Mouthguards can be purchased ready-made at most sporting goods stores. However, these are not custom-fit. Therefore, they may not provide adequate protection. The boil and bite versions are more expensive and sold in stores. While these are better than the ready-made ones, they may feel too big or too small.

The best mouthguard to use would be a custom-made one. This is only available at a dental office. While they may be more expensive, than the two previous variants mentioned, they provide the highest amount of protection.

Dr. Dana Walters, DDS urges parents to bring their children in for custom-fit mouthguards to avoid major oral injuries. Schedule an appointment today if you want dental tips about keeping your child’s smile healthy and safe during summer sports season.

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