Consult with our office when needing customized, quality mouth guards for protection when your child is playing contact sports. Mouth guards are designed to prevent the oral trauma, concussions or facial lacerations. Schools and sports organizations usually stipulate that athletes use mouth guards. The specially prepared, customized appliances provided by oral healthcare providers ensure a better fit and a greater degree of protection against injury.
Oral mouth guards date back to the early 1900s, when they were introduced to protect professional boxers. Today, the American Dental Association strongly recommends that anyone participating in high impact sports protect themselves by wearing oral guards. Statistics indicate that dental injuries are the most common type of injury suffered while playing sports. Furthermore, these types of injuries are completely preventable. Athletes should wear mouth guards whether participating in practice sessions or during actual game play. Consider that:
* The expense of dental repairs, which may include fractured teeth, are considerably more than the cost of a protective mouth guard.
* The expense of having one tooth extracted, restored or replaced may cost thousands of dollars. Multiply the cost of one tooth times multiple teeth in the event of extensive injury.
The Danger of Concussion
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports that minor children suffer more than 173,000 concussive injuries every year. The majority of these injuries may not have been as severe had many of these youngsters been wearing mouth guards. Customized appliances, in particular, provide added protection against concussion by preventing the jaw from impacting with the skull. When experiencing a sudden impact, the guard absorbs the force and shockwaves, which would otherwise transfer into delicate brain tissue.
Unfortunately, many amateur and professional athletes prefer playing sports without the benefits of guards because of discomfort and ill-fitting devices. While over-the-counter generic guards offer some protection, the devices are largely manufactured as one-size-fits all. These appliances cannot possibly conform to all sizes and shapes of oral cavities to provide adequate protection.
However, customized guards feel more natural and enable athletes to function without interference. Depending on the type of guard chosen, some facilities additionally offer the chance to have graphic designs applied to the front of the appliance. Once sized and ordered, guards are typically available within a matter of two weeks.
Effectiveness of Guards
According to the American Dental Association, using mouth guards saves high school and college aged athletes participating in football from an estimated 200,000 serious injuries annually. Combining mouth guards with other recommended safety equipment is the optimal means of preventing dental injury or concussions.