According to the American Dental Association®, more than 5 million teeth are knocked out in sporting activities each year. Dental injuries are the most common type of oral-facial injury sustained during participation in sports; incidents typically occur in youth, high school and collegiate athletic activities.
As with helmets or other safety gear, protecting your child’s smile is important to maintain their health as they grow up. Costs to repair teeth and oral structures following oral-facial trauma can be staggering, and will be repeated over a lifetime as dental restorations age and wear.
We recommend the use of a sports mouthguard, a flexible plastic appliance that is worn while playing sports to help prevent broken teeth and jaw injuries that can occur from blows to the face or mouth.
Athletes who participate in basketball, baseball, football, hockey, wrestling, soccer or lacrosse, as well as recreational sports such as skateboarding and bicycling, should wear mouthguards. Sports mouthguards are a “must” for patients that wear orthodontic appliances.
Types of Sports Mouthguards
Over-the-Counter Mouthguards. These come in a few varieties, including stock non-fitted mouthguards, and "boil and bite" mouthguards that are designed to be warmed in hot water and fitted in the mouth by pressing softened acrylic to mold it to the teeth.
- It can be very difficult to achieve a proper fit with these products. They also require that you keep your mouth clenched for protection during use, which is almost impossible while you are concentrated on your sport.
Custom-fitted Mouthguards. These are designed by Dr. Rodriguez and fabricated by our dental laboratory to specifically fit your child’s mouth. Because they are custom, it is possible to achieve a much better fit than over-the-counter types, and offer the greatest level of protection.
- We can fabricate a custom sports mouthguard for your child in two visits, and recommend that they bring it along to their routine dental check-ups so we can check for fit and wear.
Watch the American Dental Association® Video about Sports Mouthguards
Protect Your Child's Smile! Contact Us to schedule an appointment to have your child fitted for a custom sports mouthguard.