Athletes of all levels are prone to dental injury. To protect your teeth during sports, you must always wear the right equipment.
It is incredibly common to even lose teeth due to impact. Hockey might have the reputation for tooth loss, but it is not the only sport that puts you at risk of dental injury.
So how can athletes protect their teeth when they play?
We decided to find out from the pros of dental care, Elm Hill Dentistry. They had a lot of suggestions that would help to keep your teeth as safe as possible.
How To Protect Your Teeth From Sports Injuries
If you’re regularly playing contact sports and want to protect your teeth, you must wear protective equipment such as mouth guards and helmets.
Here’s what you should do to protect your teeth from sports injuries:
1. Wear Mouth Guards
The first suggestion we received was that any athlete who is at risk of dental injury should be wearing a mouth guard.
It is a thick piece of rubber or plastic that usually is positioned on the top arch of your mouth.
When you get hit in the mouth or fall on your face, the guard will keep your teeth in one position, preventing you from breaking or losing a tooth.
Mouth guards are available from just about any drug store, but you can also get them custom-made from your dentist.
To get the right fit, you can simply boil water, dunk the guard in, and then put it in your mouth once the material has softened.
The guards you get from the dentist are still of higher quality, but they do cost more.
You might think that it seems odd we suggest a helmet when we are talking about your teeth, but a helmet can also protect you from various dental injuries.
If your helmet can have a faceguard, all the better. A faceguard, or mask, will prevent direct impact to your face, which can easily happen from a piece of equipment, such as a bat or hockey stick.
Even without the mask, a helmet can prevent injuries to your head and face, keeping your teeth safer.
3. Wearing The Right Equipment
In some cases, wearing the right equipment can help prevent dental injuries. You wouldn’t want to wear a bike helmet in a hockey game or have a football mask instead of a hockey mask.
Make sure that all of your safety gear is appropriate for the sport that you are playing in order to get the most protection possible.
4. Good Hygiene
While most dental injuries in sports come from trauma, you can also reduce your risk of injury by taking better care of your teeth.
If your teeth are unhealthy or you suffer from periodontal disease, you do not have a strong foundation within your mouth as it is.
It is important that you brush your teeth at least twice a day and floss daily.
Additionally, you should go to the dentist twice a year for cleanings and checkups. They can also look for any potential fractures that you might have received, but were not completely sure were actual damage.
Preventative care, in general, will help you avoid the most dental injuries that you might receive, so take care of your teeth.
5. Think Of All Risks
If you are thinking to yourself that you only participate in solo sports and will not have any direct contact with others, do not rule out the risk of a dental injury. Whether you play rugby or ski, you are at risk of dental injury.
Do not assume that your sport is passive and that you will never receive a dental injury. It is better to be safe than sorry.
Ultimately, the best way to protect your teeth during sports is to know how to play your sport well. With proper safety and control in place, you are less likely to be in a position of getting injured, to begin with.