Mouthguards

Mouthguards
Posted on 04/24/2017
Mouthguards

mouthguardsYou will often hear your child’s pediatric dentist stress the importance of protecting your child’s teeth from the harm of decay and disease. However, it is just as important to protect your child’s teeth from external force and trauma—everything from teeth grinding to obtaining an injury during a sporting event.

For best protective measures in these types of situations, Dr. Tracy Takenaka—your trusted DuPont, WA & JBLM pediatric dentist—recommends the use of mouthguards.

About Mouthguards

Mouthguards protect the teeth, jaw, and the soft tissues of the tongue, lips, and cheek lining.

Types of Mouthguards

Mouthguards can be classified into two main categories:

  • Sports Mouthguards – used to protect the jaw and teeth during physical activity and sports such as football, basketball, hockey, boxing, karate, or any other activity where you may be hit in the mouth.
  • Nightguards – used by patients who grind or clench their teeth at night; these nocturnal mouthguards protect the teeth and bite during your sleep.

Sports Mouthguards

Whenever your child engages in intensive, potentially dangerous physical activity, it is important that he or she wears the right protection. For football players that means a helmet. For soccer players that means shin guards. For skateboarders that means elbow pads. But for all these activities, and many others, the quintessential protective accessory is the sports mouthguard.

According to the American Dental association, 30% of all dental injuries are sports related. By engaging in physical activity without a sports mouthguard, your child is at risk for:

  • Broken Teeth
  • Chipped Teeth
  • Fractured Jaws
  • Concussions
  • Broken Braces/Brackets
  • Root Damage to Teeth

Nightguards

Research shows that up to 1/3 of the population exhibits teeth grinding/clenching (typically at night while sleeping). When teeth grinding/clenching becomes chronic it can cause permanent damage to your child’s teeth. Over time it wears down the surface of the teeth, which then leaves the soft dentin beneath the enamel exposed and vulnerable. As a result, your child could experience:

  • Chipped Teeth
  • Tooth Flattening
  • Tooth Loss
  • Damaged Fillings.

Additionally, grinding/clenching the teeth at night can cause your child to wake up with headaches, tooth pain, and a sore jaw. Never fear though; nightguards can alleviate pain, protect teeth from harmful long-term effects, and offer immediate relief to sleep stress.

Get Your Mouthguard Today

Children’s Dentistry of DuPont wants to help protect your child’s teeth from harm and pain whenever possible. If you feel your child needs a sports mouthguard for protection during physical activity, or a nightguard to treat teeth grinding and clenching, please contact us to learn more or schedule an appointment with our DuPont, WA and JBLM pediatric dentist today. Thank you, we look forward to hearing from you soon!