06 Apr Protect Your Teeth Like A Pro (Athlete)
Spring and Summer tends to bring an influx of patients reporting of injuries during sports or other activities. The increase in free time, competitive team activities, and contact sports makes this time of year particularly dangerous for young athletes’ teeth. With April being National Facial Protection Month, we’d like to dedicate this post to the importance of mouth guards.
“Every April, National Facial Protection Month strives to raise public awareness and remind parents/caregivers, coaches and athletes to play it safe while playing sports. The goal of National Facial Protection Month 2016 is to help people learn more about how simple it can be to take five and make a play for better safety that protects not only your mouth and face, but also your peace of mind.”
Wearing a mouth guard is the quickest, easiest, and cheapest way to prevent a multitude of injuries. You can get a mouth guard that you can mold to your teeth for as low as $2, and it takes about 5-10 minutes to mold it. For this little effort you can help your young athlete prevent tooth loss or chipping, oral pain, and save big on dental costs!
Professional athletes from all kinds of sports wear mouth guards while playing.
While most professional sports do not require the use of a mouth guard, a growing number of pro athletes are opting to wear them whenever they’re playing. Lebron James, Blake Griffin, and Colin Kaepernick, not to mention professional athletic trainers from multiple pro sports, all have spoken about the importance of wearing mouth guards, despite the stigma in the athletic community.
As if there weren’t enough reasons to wear a mouth guard, recent studies have shown that mouth guards may help to prevent concussions during contact sports. In sports like football, soccer, lacrosse, basketball, and more, players often collide with one another. Wearing a mouth guard helps to absorb the shock of impact, putting less on the jaw, teeth, and brain. One study showed that high school athletes’ chance of sustaining a concussion or oral injuries drastically reduced by wearing a mouth guard. Furthermore, when athletes used a custom-made mouth guard (from a dentist), instead of an over-the-counter mouth guard, the percent of those that sustained injuries/concussions was cut in half!
The American Dental Association highly recommends wearing a mouth guard during the following activities:
- Martial Arts
- Field Hockey