Mouthguards for Children
Every child should be encouraged to participate in athletics for many reasons: from the numerous well-documented and researched benefits one gets from staying in shape to the sense of achievement and competitive spirit. However, there are also drawbacks.
In 2012, the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation forecast that over three million teeth would be knocked out in youth sporting events that year alone! Among all the pediatric dental injuries we treat here at Katy Kids Dentist, we estimate that at least 25 percent of these are sports-related. Not only do these problems cause pain and discomfort, but fixing them can be highly expensive as well. A missing permanent tooth can cost up to $20,000 over a lifetime to repair and heal!
Knowing this information, should children be coerced not to play sports? Of course not! Pediatric dentists will agree that most of these dental injuries are preventable. The way to do so is through a properly-fitted and comfortable mouthguard. It will keep your children’s teeth safe and save you money in the long term.
Do Mouthguards Work?
The American Dental Association (ADA) estimates that athletes who don’t wear mouthguards are 60 times more likely to suffer a dental injury than those who do. Only four school-based sports require their participants to wear a mouthguard: football, lacrosse, field hockey, and ice hockey. Though football is usually associated as the sport most likely to cause harm, a child is 15 times more likely to receive a facial or mouth injury while playing basketball when compared to football. Mandatory mouthguards are a major reason for this drastic drop in football injuries. The sports actually associated with the largest amounts of dental injuries - basketball and baseball - don’t require their players to wear mouthguards at all. The ADA recommends all athletes to wear mouthguards in not only those aforementioned sports, but also soccer, bicycling, skateboarding, wrestling, and volleyball as well.
Why You Should Wear a Custom-fit Mouthguard
The best mouthguard is always the one that your child will wear. This means that above all else, your child has to feel comfortable and want to wear it. This is why Katy Kids Dentist recommends a custom mouthguard for your child. Custom mouthguards are specifically made for the individual and they eliminate the drawbacks that you’ll get from mouthguards you purchase ‘off the shelf.’ Off the shelf mouthguards come in a limited range of sizes and require the user to clench their teeth to wear them, creating discomfort for some users.
For custom mouthguards, we first make a model of the patient’s teeth. After that, we mold the protector around the model to create a perfect fit. This allows the patient to feel a superior level of comfort with a mouthguard in place. Not only that, but we make the mouthguard from a tough, high-quality material that’s guaranteed to give your child maximum protection for a reasonable price.
If your child is involved in athletics and you’re looking for a pediatric dentist in or around the Katy, Texas area to discuss anything regarding custom mouthguards, please contact us. Our phone number is (281) 712-8002. If you want to schedule an appointment, you can do so on our appointment page. We hope to talk to you soon!