A mouthguard is made of flexible pieces of plastic that are worn in the mouth over teeth during sports activities. The American Dental Association (ADA) states that over 200,000 mouth injuries are prevented annually by wearing a mouthguard. So it may be surprising to learn that, according to an American Association of Orthodontists survey, 84 percent of children do not wear mouth guards when playing sports. Unlike other protective gear like helmets and shoulder pads, mouth guards are sometimes not required in sports; however, mouth guards are essential for not only protecting your teeth, but for helping to shield your jaw.
Check out these five reasons why wearing a mouthguard is important:
- Mouthguards Cushion Teeth from Impact
Getting your tooth knocked out is the last thing anybody wants, especially if wearing a mouthguard could have prevented the accident. Luckily, it is possible to restore a permanent tooth if it’s been knocked out.
- Mouthguards Prevent Soft Tissue Injuries
When you wear a mouthguard, you ensure that your teeth will never inadvertently come in contact with soft tissues like your lower lip, which could lead to excessive bleeding and stitches. Mouthguards also prevent tongue and cheek injuries.
- Mouthguards Ward Off Teeth Fractures
Breaking teeth can be avoided when you wear a mouthguard. In the event that a tooth does fracture, there are treatments your dentist can perform, including sealing the fracture with white filling material, root canal treatment or extraction, depending on the severity of the fracture.
- Mouthguards Shield Against Tooth Displacement
A displaced tooth is one that is able to move easily after it absorbs impact, such as when a softball hits you in the mouth. If you’re not wearing a mouthguard, one (or some) of your teeth could break. Wearing a mouthguard, on the other hand, will protect your teeth from the force of the blow.
- Mouthguards Minimize the Chance of Concussion
There is some discussion regarding this claim. Those who believe that wearing a mouthguard can help avert a concussion may explain that mouthguard materials, by nature, must have shock absorption qualities which could reduce the force of impact on the skull and prevent a concussion.
If you are interested in learning more about how wearing a mouthguard can help protect your teeth and jaw, we welcome the opportunity to meet with you. To schedule an appointment, please contact Scott T. LeSueur, DDS & Charles A Dodaro, DDS online or by calling our Mesa office at (480) 834-6991 today. We serve Phoenix, Scottsdale, Tempe, and all surrounding Arizona communities.