As your kids grow up, they might be more active than usual, all ready to see the world. Sports, in particular, is one way your child can express this curiosity. Here, your kids don’t just get to meet new friends. They get to explore what they can do physically. And build their character in the process. However, getting into sports is not without risk. Your child might be more susceptible to injuries, particularly dental trauma. That said, how can you prevent dental trauma during sporting events?
Keels, in her report on the Management of Dental Trauma in a Primary Care Setting, noted that 30% of children had experienced dental injury by the age of 14. She notes that the injured child goes to a physician or pediatrician instead of a dentist because few emergency departments have a dentist on-call. Without the right measures in place, this may complicate the healing process, as the injured tooth usually has a limited time frame for survival.
It’s for this reason that most pediatricians and pediatric dentists may prescribe preventive measures to lessen this risk, mainly if the child is active in sports. How, then, can you prevent dental trauma during sporting events?
Know the risks each sport has
When it comes to preventive measures, usually the best course of action is to assume that there will be risk involved. However, not all games carry the same susceptibility. A chess player, for instance, might be less likely to sustain dental trauma than an American football player typically does.
Assessing the risk involved with your child’s sport, then, can not only help you plan the needed preventive measures accordingly. It also prevents you from making unnecessary purchases. Putting preventive measures in place before your child engages in a sport can cut down their injury risk and the succeeding treatment cost. But buying a helmet when your child only needs a mouthguard might put an extraneous strain on your finances.
When evaluating the risk factor, it’s always best to consult a professional before your child engages in a particular sport. For dental issues, you might want to ask your child’s pediatric dentist.
Choose the right protective gear
Once you’ve assessed the risk involved in your child’s sport, the next step is to find the right gear for their needs. Some sports have strict rules on what type of equipment is allowed on the playing field. These regulations are also something you’ll need to take into consideration.
It’s then helpful to know the options you have at hand and what you can use them for. Currently, there are three options to consider:
- Face cage. You typically use them in contact sports such as rugby and the martial arts. Face cages prevent harmful contact to the face. They are not, however, permitted in all types of sports, so make sure that you’re familiar with the rules and regulations of your child’s chosen game.
- Helmet. Helmets are usually paired up with face cages to protect the full skull. But some sports uniforms do not have the cage in their helmets. Regardless, helmets prevent harm to the head, which may be life-threatening.
- Mouth guard. Aside from being permitted in all types of sports, a mouth guard is also the most prescribed method of preventing dental trauma. Whatever game your child chooses, however, you might want to buy a custom mouth guard instead of a commercial one for maximum protection.