Each April the dental community joins together to promote National Facial Protection month. It is the perfect time of year to bring attention to how important it is to protect your teeth, gum and full mouth from injury during all the spring sports.
When it comes to dental injuries, sport related activities account for an estimated 39% during the spring months. A simple way to limit the risk of oral injury, especially while undergoing orthodontic treatment, is to always wear protective facial and mouth gear, such as a mouth guard, when engaging in organized or recreational sports.
“It is important that adult and children athletes and coaches to play it safe by wearing mouth guards and appropriate protective gear when participating in activities that could cause injuries,” said Essex-County based orthodontist Dr. Abraham. “Many sports injuries can be prevented by wearing appropriate protective gear and we provide all of our patients complimentary mouth guards to fit over their clear or metal braces. We review this with all of our patients at their complimentary exam and consultations.”
Mouth guards are one of the least expensive pieces of protective equipment available. Over-the-counter mouth guards cost as little as $5 and can protect teeth and jaws, but they only provide protection when they are worn.
Dr. Abraham advises parents and coaches to remind youngsters to always use a mouth guard when participating in any activity during which the mouth could come into contact with a hard object or the pavement. “Athletes who wear braces should consult their orthodontist for a recommendation of the best mouth guard to wear during orthodontic treatment,” said Dr. Abraham
Consistent use of other protective equipment is important, too. Helmets save lives and prevent head injuries. They should be worn for activities such as bicycling, skateboarding or skating on in-line skates. Helmet wear is mandated for many organized sports. Face guards, devices made of plastic or metal that attach to baseball helmets, help to prevent facial injuries as well.
For more information, visit www.AbrahamOrthodontics.com, or call 519-398-8101.
National Facial Protection Month is co-sponsored annually by the American and Canadian Association of Orthodontists and by the American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry, the Academy for Sports Dentistry and the American Dental Association. Orthodontists receive an additional two to three years of specialized education beyond dental school to learn the proper way to align and straighten teeth. Only those with this formal education may call themselves “orthodontists.”