As the beginning of the school year approaches, there’s a lot more things to think about than just school. One of those things is sports — whether your child plays for a school team, for a club team, in gym class, or just for fun, it’s important to start thinking about protecting your health while playing.
Did you know that more than 5 million teeth are knocked out every year, and that the main cause of this is contact sports? The worst sports for knocked-out teeth are basketball, hockey, and biking. Lacrosse and soccer aren’t far behind either. You might wonder about football, but then football benefits from requiring players to wear a helmet and use a mouthguard. Many other contact sports don’t.
While a helmet always helps, what’s usually more important is a mouthguard. When you get hit in the face, or you fall, your lower jaw smashes into your upper jaw which causes enough force to rattle your brain thereby inducing a concussion. A mouthguard, usually worn on the upper jaw, cuts down on this force and reduces the chances of concussion. If you’re in a more involved sport like boxing, then you might want to consider wearing two mouthguards, but for most contact sports, a single mouthguard is enough. It’s also best if the mouthguard is custom-fit to your jaw to ensure the highest amount of protection possible.
Sometimes a tooth just gets knocked out though. When that happens, you must get to a dentist straight-away. There’s no waiting until the end of the period or thinking that you can make it through just fine. If you’re quick enough, the dentist can reimplant it and make sure it comes back healthy. If you get lucky and just happen to chip or crack a tooth, it’s still important to get that looked by a dentist too.
Sports are a great way to keep active and fit, as well as a mood-booster for anyone. If you get hurt in any way playing, whether it be a tooth injury or a more physical injury, the goal is to get to a doctor and get back into sports-playing shape.