Should I protect my child’s teeth during sports?

Sports are a wonderful outlet for kids to get active, develop motor skills and learn about team dynamics and how to work with others. As parents and caregivers alike, we naturally also worry about their health and safety during any activity that may result in injury to their mouth and teeth.

Accidents Happen in Sports

Although you may not think about your children’s teeth during sports, accidents do happen. Be it a stray hockey stick, a basketball or even an elbow to the face, children are at risk for severe damage to their teeth.

Along with potential hazards a simple tumble or slip can knock a tooth out or cause jaw or face injury. An estimated 13-39% of all dental injuries are sports-related.

All athletes in many different sports constitute a population that is extremely susceptible to dental trauma. The more contact your child has during game play with other players, the higher the chance of direct trauma to the jaw and teeth.

What can you do to protect your child’s teeth?

Along with advocating good sportsmanship and teaching them the rules of the game for safety, kids can also benefit from protective mouthguards for teeth.

These protective mouthguards, sometimes called mouth protectors, help cushion the blow to the face and minimize the risk of broken teeth along with decreasing injury to the lips, tongue and jaw.

There are many types of mouthguards to choose from and they may range from custom made, sometimes needed for kids with braces, and stock which you can purchase at any sporting goods store.

Knowing when to use protective equipment

It is important to keep in mind that protective mouthguards can also be used in recreational activities as well as organized sports.

Any activity that places a child at risk for potential slips and falls should take into consideration the use of protective mouth equipment. From roller blading to skateboarding, kids are at risk for potential dental injury.

Should your child suffer a severe dental injury to the face, jaw or teeth our team at Dental @ The Met can assist you in getting the help you need.

Remember to use protective gear as a precaution but accidents do happen and we are here for you when they do occur.

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