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Mouthguards & Sport Guards


Small boy with sparring gloves, helmetat, and mouthguard. Patient of Children's Dentistry of DuPont, DuPont, WAAs the weather warms up, many people, especially children, get more active. We all know more exercise, whether it's spring sports or outdoor play, is great for children's overall health. But more activity also increases the risk of injury.

Dental injuries are most common in children. But adults, too, may chip, crack, or knock out a tooth. Lips, tongues, cheeks, and jaws can also be injured.

The head and neck have a lot of blood vessels so injuries in this region tend to bleed more than injuries in other places. It may or may not be an indication of the seriousness of the injury. Less obvious injuries to children may occur when they fall with a sharp object in their mouths.

Here Are a Few Ways You Can Prevent Oral Injury


•  Wear a mouthguard, helmet, and face guard when playing sports where such protection is needed.
•  Remove orthodontic headgear before physical activity.
•  Don't allow children to run with anything in their mouths.
•  Be careful using bottles and spoons to feed very young children. Soft tissue injuries can occur.

Mouthguards


Bruxism (teeth grinding) can cause moderate to severe long-term damage to teeth. Constant grinding wears down the surface of the tooth, exposing the soft dentin beneath the enamel. Some of the damage that can occur includes:
•  Chipped teeth
•  Tooth flattening and tooth wear
•  Cracked tooth enamel
•  Cracked, loose or broken fillings
•  Tooth loss
•  Gum recession
•  Tooth collapse

Bruxing can even cause a root fracture below the gumline, requiring a root canal and crown to restore the damaged tooth.

Mouthguards


When it comes to protecting your mouth, a mouthguard is an essential piece of athletic gear that should be part of your standard equipment from an early age. While collision and contact sports, such as boxing, are higher-risk sports for the mouth, you can experience a dental injury in non-contact activities too, such as gymnastics and skating.

There Are Three Types of Mouthguards


Custom-fitted: These are made specifically for you by your dentist. They may be more expensive than the other versions, but because they are customized, usually offer the best fit.

Stock: These are inexpensive and come pre-formed, ready to wear. However, they often don't fit well. They can be bulky and can make breathing and talking difficult.

Boil and bite:These mouth protectors can be bought at many sporting goods stores and drugstores, and may offer a better fit than stock mouth protectors. They are first softened in water (boiled), then inserted and allowed to adapt to the shape of your mouth.

The best mouthguard is one that has been custom made for your mouth by your dentist. However, if a custom-fitted mouthguard is not feasible, you should still wear a stock mouthguard or a boil-and-bite mouthguard from the drugstore.

Call Children's Dentistry of DuPont at (253) 244-9778 for more information.
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