You might be wearing the best shoes, a clean uniform and have a winning attitude. But don’t forget about one of the most important pieces of sports equipment available today: the athletic mouthguard. Believe it or not, not just any mouthguard will do. However, if you’re fitted for the one that truly meets your needs, you can avoid potentially painful and costly injuries to your face and teeth.
The right sports mouthguard can prevent injuries such as loosened, broken or dislodged teeth, lacerated or bitten tongue, objects getting caught between the teeth, and jaw fracture. According to the American Dental Association, an estimated two million teeth get knocked out each year due to sports-related injuries. An athlete who is not using a mouthguard is 60 times more likely to suffer harm to his or her teeth.
Wearing a sports mouthguard is not as easy as simply going to a pharmacy or sporting goods store and buying one. In fact, it is recommended that athletes who play contact games such as hockey, football, rugby and boxing see a sports dentist who is fully trained in recommending the equipment that can prevent oral-facial injuries. These sports dentists are the same specially trained men and women who consult with professional sports teams, assess and address injuries that occur on the field and recommend long term treatments. They can also use their knowledge of sports dentistry to help amateur athletes to take preventative steps against getting hurt, including obtaining proper mouthguards. In many cases, a sports dentist will recommend protective mouth ware for kids involved in somewhat less physical activities such as skating, biking and wrestling, since oral-facial injuries are still quite likely.
Children and teenagers have the unique opportunity to try any number of recreational activities, including sports. Although injuries are sometimes inevitable with physical activity, several of the most serious can be prevented, including many of those to the mouth and face. These types of sports injuries are not just painful and expensive; they are often unsightly and draw unwanted attention. It’s hard enough to be a teenager without the burden of a disfiguring injury to your face or teeth. If wearing a sports mouthguard can help to keep that from happening, why not take that small step?
When you come to your initial consultation with Dr. Galligan, you’ll quickly recognize our knowledgeable and courteous service and our focus on sports dentistry. We are committed to supporting children and youth athletics by making these activities as safe and enjoyable as possible. After a free initial consultation, all child athletes will receive a free pro-style mouthguard. We will help you find the mouthguard that will complete the uniform and enable you to truly be at the top of your game.