Summer is quickly drawing to a close. What that means for some families is back to school and back to sports!
Lets use August’s Smile Blog to talk about protecting your teeth and your kids teeth during sports activity!
Did you know that 5 Million teeth are injured or knocked out every year! This leads to about 500 million dollars a year spent on replacement or fixes. About 40% of these are sports related!
The first and most important thing I think mouth guards can protect against in trauma to the Jaw Joints. Any forces to your jaw during contact sports can lead to compression or even fracture of the areas around the joint. It can also lead to more forces directly transmitted to the head and cause brain injuries like concussions!
Your teeth are at risk of injury too! They can be luxated which means pushed out of position, avulsed or knocked out, or fractured.
Fracture: Depending on the fracture, the tooth can sometimes easily be treated with a filing or crown, sometimes root canals can be necessary, but sometimes fractures in the root mean the tooth cannot be saved! See your dentist after this, the sooner the better but likely these injuries do not need to be seen immediately. The X-ray above shows a tooth fractured at the root which is likely cannot be saved. The picture above shows a tooth that has been fractured on the crown portion which can be saved easily.
Luxation: If a tooth is pushed out of position, you will need the tooth to be repositioned and splinted. Sometimes these teeth may end up needing root canals. If your dentist is not available within a number of hours, an urgent care or ER can likely help with this.
Avulsion: If a tooth is knocked out, time is absolutely of the essence here! Ideally you want to seek treatment within 1 hour! A lot of times the tooth can be replanted and splinted. Make sure to take the avulsed tooth and place it in Milk, Saliva, or Sterile Saline. There is also a product called “save a tooth” which can be bought online made specifically to store avulsed teeth in transit to the dentist or medical professional for replantation.
Protecting your teeth is as easy as a $5 mouth guard from Academy
You can spend all the way up to a couple hundred for custom fit with custom colors and writing. Here is professional UFC fighter Roger Narvaez with a guard we made him.
The moral of the story is that prevention is key, but if something does happen the best thing to do is to act quickly.
Keep Smiling !