The 2017-18 college basketball season is nearing its end … and it’s a great time to remind you that you should be wearing an athletic mouthguard anytime to you take to the court.
Or the field.
Or the ice.
Since April is National Facial Protection Month, we wanted to encourage you to wear a mouthguard for any sports that you play . It doesn’t matter if you are a professional athlete, a budding youth league superstar, or someone who plays in a recreational league to stay in shape. Everyone should be wearing a mouthguard while playing or practicing a high-impact sport.
Ideally, that would be a custom-fitted mouthguard, which we can make for you at Atlanta West Dentistry. For us, this is part of the family dentistry we offer at our Marietta, GA office.
To learn more or to make an appointment to protect your teeth, call (770) 744-4619.
Do You Play a ‘High-Impact’ Sport?
As we noted above, anyone who participates in high-impact sports should be protecting their teeth. That’s not just our opinion.
It’s the opinion of several professional dental organizations including the Academy for Sports Dentistry, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the American Association of Orthodontists, and the American Dental Association.
So, how do you know if your sport is considered high-impact? Simple, check all the boxes that apply to your sport of choice:
⃞ Frequent jumping
⃞ Frequent physical contact between athletes (including equipment such as sticks or bats)
⃞ Frequent changes of direction or speed
⃞ Objects (balls, pucks, etc.) flying through the air
If you checked one or more of those boxes, then you are playing a high-impact sport.
This covers everything from volleyball and soccer to cheerleading and BMX racing.
You wouldn’t let your kids ride in the car without buckling them in for safety. This is for their protection in case something happens. Likewise, you expect your kids to wear the right protective equipment for any sport they play, which is why they should be wearing mouthguards, too.
You don’t want any accident to happen, but if it does, would you rather put ice on a swollen lip or pay to replace a broken tooth?
A Friendly Reminder
If you are a college basketball fan, you may have already seen how quickly a tooth can be broken.
During the Big XII conference tournament, a player for Texas, Kerwin Roach, broken a tooth when an opposing player accidentally hit him in the mouth with an elbow. Luckily for Roach, the team dentist for the Kansas City Chiefs football team was at the game. The dentist, Dr. Bill Busch, was able to repair Roach’s tooth during halftime.
Roach did play in the second half of that game. He also wore a mouthguard when he went back in the game.
It’s worth noting that basketball — not football — causes the most dental injuries of any sport among 13- to 17-year-olds. A big reason for that is that football players are required to wear mouthguards, while basketball players are not. This also is why the ADA and the other organization mentioned earlier strongly recommend wearing mouthguards, even when they aren’t required.
Custom-Fitted is Better
We want you to keep smiling long after the games are over.
This is why we hope you will wear some kind of mouthguard when you play sports. Any athletic mouthguard will provide a level of protection, but custom-fitted mouthguards are your best option.
First, they provide better protection because they are made specifically to fit your teeth. It’s like the difference between putting a musical instrument in a box or putting that instrument in a case designed just for carrying that instrument.
Second, custom-fitted mouthguards are smaller, which helps in other ways.
A smaller mouthguard is more comfortable, making you or your children more likely to wear it. A smaller mouthguard will not interfere with your breathing, nor will it interfere with your ability to talk while it’s in your mouth. Can you say the same thing about bulky “boil and bite” mouthguards?
When your kids’ playing days are over, we want them to have all their teeth. We hope you will call (770) 744-4619 or contact us online so our team at Atlanta West Dentistry can help your family stay in the game!