At Dr. Bill Dorfman, DDS – Century City Aesthetic Dentistry, we treat dental emergencies caused by sports injuries. These include knocked-out teeth, broken teeth, and mouth lacerations.
Many of these injuries could have been prevented (or rendered less severe) with the proper protective gear.
All athletes who participate in contact sports are at risk of injuries to their mouths and teeth. It doesn’t matter if you are a professional athlete or a 6-year-old playing youth soccer.
When it comes to protecting your mouth, a custom mouthguard is a vital piece of athletic gear that should be used from an early age.
What age group has the most injuries?
8- to 12-year-old kids who participate in basketball, hockey, baseball, soccer, rugby, football, and lacrosse are typically most affected by lost or damaged teeth. But even those that participate in non-contact sports like skateboarding, mountain biking or climbing can benefit from wearing a protective mouthguard.
Mouthguards are made of strong, flexible materials that are designed to protect your teeth, gum, and jaw in case of an impact. A mouthguard forms a protective layer between your teeth and the point of impact. Following are three vital ways a mouthguard can guard you while playing sports.
Any impact to the face or jaw involves force, or energy. A mouthguard absorbs some of the energy, ensuring that the potential harm caused by the impact is limited. The cushioning effect of a mouthguard can prevent your teeth from being slammed together. By absorbing force, mouthguards can also help prevent jaw fractures and neck trauma.
Prevent Broken Teeth
Another advantage of using a mouthguard is that it spreads out the energy directed at the teeth. For example, if you are hit in the mouth with a hockey stick, the mouthguard spreads out the energy that accompanies the impact. This can prevent broken teeth by decreasing the likelihood that a single tooth will take the whole brunt of the force.
Avoid Lip and Tongue Injuries
Mouthguards cover the upper teeth completely. This creates a functional barrier between your teeth and the rest of your mouth. This decreases the chance of lip and tongue injuries by making it harder for your teeth to cut your lip or your tongue.
With an individually-constructed mouthguard, you will make sure you get an effective and comfortable fit. It makes playing sports safer for your smile.