Is your child into sports? If so, then you probably have to buy a mouth guard. Certain sports require every player to wear a mouthguard to protect from dental injury. However, not all mouth guards are the same. For a typical parent, it may be difficult which one suits best for your child.

Why Bother Getting One?

             Protect your child's smile

             Protect your child's smile

When you think about sports injury, what comes into your mind? You’ll likely think of things like bruises, scrapes, cuts, sprains, muscle cramps and even broken bones. Yet, you might have overlooked the chance of getting in the mouth, jaw or teeth.

Truth is, dental emergencies can be life-threatening. Most schools require using mouthguard as a protection during contact sports such as ice hockey and football. They are not require for non-contact sports like basketball or baseball even though there is still the risk for a dental injury.

According to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD), sports accidents accounts for about 10% to 39% of all dental injuries in kids. The most susceptible to oral injury are children between the age of 7 and 11.

Mouthguards can help protect the teeth by acting as a cushion against impacts to the face. Mouthguards reduce the risk of injuries to the jaw, teeth and soft tissues of the mouth. The American Dental Association (ADA) recommends the use of items that can help prevent injuries to the mouth and face such as helmets, mouthguards and faceguards. It also encourages providing education on mouthguards and facial injury risks.

Mouthguards must be used by everyone while playing a sport, not only for contact sports. Moreover, they have to be worn even during practices.

How to Get the Most Out of Your Mouthguard

These tips will help you get the most from using a mouthguard:

  1. Make sure you remove any removable dental appliances such as retainers.
  2. If your child is wearing braces or has a protruding jaw, clef palate or receding chin, it is best to wear a custom-fitted mouthguard.
  3. Don’t chew, bite or cut pieces off when using a mouthguard.
  4. Always wear mouthguard during games and practice sessions.
  5. Don’t forget to have regular dental checkups with your pediatric dentist. Each time you visit, bring your mouthguard with you.

When choosing a mouthguard, make sure that it is tear-resistant and resilient. It should also be comfortable and must fit properly. Aside from being easy to clean, the right mouthguard should not restrict breathing and speech.

Your children’s dentist can create a custom-made mouthguard for your child that is durable, comfortable and provides superior protection from dental injury. Since treating sports-related dental injuries can be a costly situation, having a custom-made mouthguard can be a worthwhile investment.

Mint Kids Dentistry’s top priority is bringing children and adolescents on the right path to dental health and proper oral hygiene. Dr. Soo Jun believes that early education will prepare kids to a lifetime of optimal dental health. Hence, she educates the importance of routine dental checkups and proper oral care.

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