As another school year gets underway, and with fall sports already in high gear, there is always a need to emphasize the importance of mouthguards. Many parents whose children participate in athletic activities don’t think that their child needs a mouthguard because the sport they play isn’t high contact. Today, HomeTown Dental wants to share with you some advice about mouthguards and dental health.
Emergency Dental Injuries and Mouthguards
The American Dental Association claims a multitude of sports-related dental injuries surveys have documented that regardless of age, gender and skill level, all who participate in sports-related or athletic activities are at risk of sustaining dental injuries. While the Center for Disease Control says sports-related dental injuries make up 600,000 emergency room visits each year and can help prevent a lot more than damaged teeth.
While collision and contact sports, such as football, hockey and martial arts, have injury risks that are an innate part of those activities, dental injuries also occur in non-contact activities and exercises, such as gymnastics or cycling.
Choosing a Mouthguard
When it comes to the types of mouthguards, you have three main choices. These include:
- Custom-made: The very best for protecting your child’s dental health because they are custom made to perfectly fit their mouth.
- Boil and Bite: These can be bought at many sporting goods stores and are a great option for those who don’t want to spend the money on a custom-made mouthguard. HomeTown Dental recommends CustMbite MVP, because it has earned the ADA Seal of Acceptance.
- Stock: These are inexpensive and come pre-formed. While they may seem like a good option, they often don’t fit well and can cause discomfort.
Because your child’s mouth is still changing and growing, don’t be surprised if you have to replace a mouthguard midseason. You should replace it immediately if it shows signs of wear or is ill-fitting. Here are some tips for mouthguard care:
- Between uses, make sure the mouthguard is clean and dry.
- Rinse before and after each use or brush with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
- Store and transport the mouthguard in a sturdy container that has vents, so it can safely dry.
- Never leave the mouthguard in the sun or in hot water.
To keep up with your athlete’s overall dental health, be sure to schedule regular appointments with a trusted dentist at one of our nine North Texas locations. Contact your local Hometown Dental today to schedule your next visit.
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