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Mouthguards: Prevent Dental Injuries

What if you suddenly lost one or two of your front teeth while taking part in a sports activity? Smiling, talking, eating—everything would suddenly be affected. Knowing how to prevent injuries to your mouth and face is especially important if you participate in organized sports or other recreational activities.

Mouth Protectors

Mouthguards, also called mouth protectors, help cushion a blow to the face, minimizing the risk of broken teeth and injuries to your lips, tongue, face or jaw. They typically cover the upper teeth and are a great way to protect the soft tissues of your tongue, lips and cheek lining. “Your top teeth take the brunt of trauma because they stick out more,” says Dr. Thomas Long, a private practice dentist and team dentist for the Carolina Hurricanes professional hockey team. “Your bottom teeth are a little more protected because they are further back.”

Mouthguards and Sports

Whenever you participate in sports that require safety gear, you should include a good mouthguard. In most organized sports, a mouthguard is an essential piece of athletic gear that should be part of your standard equipment from an early age.

The obviously more dangerous sports, such as boxing, are higher-risk sports for the mouth, but any athlete may experience a dental injury at anytime just from hard fall. This is true for many popular recreational activities that children enjoy, because they contain a greater risk of some type of injury.

Finding the Best

The advancements in sports safety have resulted in better protective equipment being developed. New products are always being tested by industry organizations like the American Dental Association (ADA) who provide their seal of approval to items like mouth guards. Equipping your child with safety gear teaches your child an important lesson about taking care of themselves.

Remember to Protect Your Head

Protective head gear can help prevent serious trauma to the brain and skull. Many local municipalities or state laws, mandate all children wear a helmet while bicycling and/or skateboarding. Hundreds of children each year experience serious head injuries resulting in long term disability and rehabilitation.