Summer means sports – so whether you’re out on the football field, skateboarding at Plaza at the Forks or just running around the backyard, know that there are measures you can take to prevent knocked-out teeth, injuries to the lips and tongue, and loss of a crown or filling.
According to the colgate.com oral care centre, the three most common types of tooth injury that may occur while playing sports are Cracked Teeth, Fractured Roots and Tooth Intrusion – all of which can be prevented with the use of a mouth guard.
According to the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation, athletes who don’t wear mouth guards are 60 times more likely to damage their teeth. Mouth guards that cover the upper teeth also protect your lips, soft tissues of your tongue, and jaw – making them just as important as a helmet and pads.
Whether you use a custom mouth guard or opt for a store bought or classic “boil-and-bite”, you’re taking crucial steps to keeping yourself in the game, whether it’s high contact or not (Hey, there’s always a chance you might fall on your face, even during a game of touch football).
Of course, you also need to stay hydrated while you’re shooting hoops or rollerblading, so you’ll want to avoid energy drinks and soda and stick to water. According to the American Dental Association, sports drinks contain sugar, which can increase your risk of cavities over time by producing acids that weaken the hard outer shell of your teeth. That, and water simply does a better job of keeping you hydrated in the heat and on the bench.
So this summer, take care of your teeth, one down/inning/period at a time!