At Walkinstown Dental Surgery, we’re always delighted to see everyone and particularly children play sports of any kind or at any level. But when it comes to contact sports, protecting your teeth with a mouth guard or gumshield is crucial. In fact, not only that, they’re required kit in rugby and GAA in Ireland today and we recommend them for use in all contact sports, including soccer.
These days, the best ones are custom moulded so that they fit your teeth perfectly. These are also very affordable and will prevent oral injuries to the teeth, mouth, cheeks, tongue and jaw. Some research suggests that nearly a third of all dental injuries are sports-related.
What happens if you don’t…?
From chipped and broken teeth to fractured crowns and bridge works, extensive damage to your teeth is a real risk in the case of a collision in a contact sport. Not to mention lip and cheek injuries as well as possible root damage to your teeth or in the worst cases fractured jaws and even concussions. It’s certainly better to be safe than sorry and while it might take a day or two to get used to, it’s definitely worth it.
Nowadays, kids are encouraged from very early on to use mouth guards so it’s a lot different to many years ago where adults were expected to start using them in their early twenties. Sporting organisations have realised the importance of dental protection and in Ireland, the GAA and the IRFU have declared all participants must wear them. Boxing has always required gumshields and we expect more sports to follow suit.
If you or your child wear orthodontics….
It’s particularly important for wearers of orthodontics or fitted bridge work, that they wear mouth guards. It’s possible that a blow to the face can damage the brackets or other fixed dental applications. Also remember that the mouth guard will place a barrier between the braces and the cheeks or lips in the event of a collision.
So whether it’s for yourself or your children, mouth guards or gum shields are both a solid investment and good for your oral health. On your next appointment, talk to us about what sports you play and we’ll discuss whether or not it’s something you’ll need.
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