Sports dentistry is the prevention and treatment of dental injuries and related oral diseases, as well as the sharing of information and equipment designed to help protect the teeth, mouth, jaw, and face of athletes of all ages. Injuries to the teeth and mouth are common among athletes. It's important to protect your child's smile if he or she plays sports, for aesthetics as well as health reasons.
Common Dental Injuries in Sports
Tooth knocked out:
-Time is the most important factor when trying to save a tooth, so get to your dentist as soon as possible. In general, there is a 30-minute window of opportunity to re-implant the tooth in the socket. Do not try to re-implant the tooth yourself. The best liquid to transport a tooth in is cold milk, however if milk is not available, use saliva, saline, or if nothing else is available, water. Don't let the tooth dry out and don't wrap it in anything, and avoid touching the tooth root.
Chipped or Cracked Tooth
If a kid's tooth is chipped or cracked our dentist will likely use an X-ray of the tooth to determine the necessary treatment. For a serious chip that exposes the pulp of the tooth, get to your dentist as soon as possible. If a tooth is chipped or cracked, sometimes the tooth can be fixed with a filling or bonding alone, however if a tooth is cracked or chipped in a way affecting the nerve of the tooth, a more complicated treatment may be needed.
If a tooth is moved due to trauma, see your dentist as soon as possible and do not try to move the tooth back on your own. For any mouth discomfort before you get to the dentist, apply ice.
Preventing Injury to your Kid's Teeth
One of the best ways to prevent injury to your child's teeth and mouth while playing sports is to wear a mouthguard. There are several types of mouthguards to choose from, and your doctor can help you choose the best one for your child's particular needs.