If you have kids in school, then chances are they’re involved in some kind of sport. But take a moment to think about your child’s teeth. Is he or she putting their pearly whites at risk on the field or court? Your child could be just a misstep away from a major sports-related dental injury.
The two biggest mouth-injuring sports are basketball and baseball. And, the most common mouth injuries are broken jaws or knocked out teeth.
According to a report by the U.S. Surgeon General, craniofacial injuries sustained during sporting activities are a major source of nonfatal injury and disability in children, accounting for up to one-third of all sports injuries. The National Youth Sports Safety Foundation estimates that more than 3 million teeth will be knocked out in youth sporting activities this year.
What can you do to protect your child’s mouth?
Make sure he or she is wearing a mouth guard and, in some cases, a helmet. Face protectors are the best way for kids to avoid dental injuries while playing sports.
If your child has a full set of permanent teeth, then I can make a custom mouth guard that provide thorough tooth protection. If he or she still has some of their baby teeth, a custom guard is a waste of money. You will be better off going to the store and buying one of the guards that can be boiled and molded to your child’s mouth.
Read more about Mouth Guards
Protection or not, accidents will happen. If a tooth is broken or cracked, see me within 24 hours. If a tooth or teeth have been displaced or knocked out, take your child immediately to my office or the emergency room and preserve the tooth by putting it in a cup of milk, not water. Milk can provide nutrients to the tooth’s cells to help keep them alive.
Give me a call if sports injuries are a concern in your household. I may be able to give you some advice – and peace of mind – about the safety of your son’s or daughter’s teeth.