Summer vacation is coming to an end, the heat is dying down, and soon the kids will be back in school studying their days away until recess. For most kids, the end of the day is a simple matter of hopping on the bus to head home.
For others — however, it means hitting the field.
Team sports will be back in session sooner rather than later, and with it all the worry of injuries from scraped knees and sprained fingers to broken bones and chipped teeth. With this guide to the benefits of mouthguards, you’ll be able to avoid dental mishaps, and ensure your child’s smile stays together.
Why Get a Mouthguard?
A mouthguard will protect your child’s teeth and gums from injury while they are playing sports. Accidents happen, especially with contact sports like football. Sports where objects could hit them in the face like basketball or soccer aren’t safe for teeth either.
A mouthguard provides you with peace of mind while your little one focuses on the game.
What Kind of Mouthguard Should I Get?
The mouthguards readily available for most people are “stock” or “standard” one-size-fits-all mouthguards that come from most stores that carry sports gear. However, these hardly ever fit well, and can make it hard to breathe or talk.
Even the “boil and bite” type can have these issues, leading to frequent replacement or —in worst-case scenario — your child taking it off on the field.
While these options are inexpensive, they do not compare with a custom-fit mouthguard that a dentist can provide.
High Tech Solution for Maximum Protection
A custom mouthguard from a dentist offers the most protection and comfort available. For custom-fit mouthguards, some dentists now utilize 3D scanning technology to ensure an accurate and comfortable fit. Many dentists can even customize the color, logo, or flavor of the mouthguard — encouraging your child to use it.
How Do I Take Care of a Mouthguard?
Maintenance for custom-fit mouthguards is simple:
- After each use, brush the mouthguard thoroughly with a toothbrush and toothpaste.
- Once or twice a month, clean the mouth guard with some cool, soapy water, rinse it completely and allow it to air dry.
- Avoid leaving the mouthguard in the sun, hot water, or anywhere where it could warp from heat.
- Keep the mouthguard in a tough case that has vents when transporting it.
- Check it regularly for jagged edges or warping. If you find either of these, it needs to be replaced.
With these tips, and a visit to your favorite dentist, your child will be ready for sports and protected from the unforeseen consequences of a foul ball, a misplaced elbow, or a slip onto the ground.
With a custom-fit mouthguard, you’ll have peace of mind, and your child will keep their smile for years to come!
About the Author
Dr. Sarah Phillips Yarnell is a professional with over ten years of experience keeping smiles of all ages safe. She has advanced training in no-fear sedation dentistry to ease anxious patients and does same-day CEREC crowns in the office for quicker tooth restoration. If your child needs a custom mouthguard before sports season ramps up, call (870) 932-8488 to ask about sports guards and preventative dentistry or visit their website here to book an appointment.