At Sawgrass Orthodontics, Our orthodontic team looks forward to helping you start on the path to a stunning, beautiful smile that you’ll love to share with the world. Sports play an active role in many of our lives. The risk of an accident damaging your braces or the mouth is always possible, regardless of the athlete’s age. You want to see your child smiling when they land a big play or score, and you don’t want anything to prevent that. If your child has braces, a retainer, or clear aligners, they need adequate protection to avoid injuries and permanent mouth damage. Keep reading to learn more about sports safety for kids mouths and orthodontic emergencies.

We want to keep your kids safe and on the field. Our experienced team is prepared for any adjustments your kids may need, from cut lips to broken appliances from sports-related injuries. We want to help your kids avoid tooth and mouth injuries to keep their heads in the game. 

Orthodontic Emergencies

When your child has their first sports-related dental injury, we want you to be prepared. Remember to stay calm and carefully examine and take note of the damage to be explained to the dental professional. Contact your orthodontist for specific instructions on mitigating your injury until they see you in the office. Here are some of the more common injuries we see and how to handle them best.

Fractured Tooth

When this happens, it can seem far scarier than the reality of the experience. To stabilize the broken or chipped tooth and control any bleeding, you can bite gently on a towel as you head to your dentist. If the tooth piece has come out of the mouth completely, it can be transported in milk, under your tongue, or wrapped in saline-soaked gauze. 

Missing Tooth

If the whole tooth has come out of the socket, do not touch the roots and pick the tooth up by the crown. Rinse it in water and place the tooth back into the socket it came from, gently biting down on a towel to hold it in place as you head to the emergency dentist. Believe it or not, a tooth placed back into the socket within 5 minutes of ejection can be permanently saved. 

Extruded or Laterally Displaced Tooth 

This injury will look like a tooth is longer than usual and often appears with the displaced tooth being pushed back or pulled forward. To reposition this tooth, place firm but precise pressure on it. This process can be painful and is best performed by a dental professional. 

Sports Safety for Kids Mouths & Orthodontic Emergencies

Intruded Tooth

If the tooth looks like it’s shorter than usual, it’s possible it has been pushed into the bone and become intruded. This is a painful experience and requires an immediate visit to an emergency dentist. Do not attempt to pull the tooth out or reposition the tooth. 

These are the most common dental emergencies children have in sports. However, these are not all possibilities. Make sure you get to your dentist as soon as possible after an injury. Your dentist or orthodontist can remedy many mouth injuries caught in the first couple of hours without risk of permanent damage. If your child develops a fever, has trouble breathing or swallowing, or their bleeding doesn’t stop after about ten minutes of pressure, it could be a more serious problem, and your child should be brought to the closest emergency room.

Protecting Your Mouth

According to a survey conducted by the American Association of Orthodontists, 99% of parents with children playing organized sports believe mouthguards should be required to play. However, close to 40% of those parents said their children never wear one for practice or games. 

If your child isn’t already used to wearing a mouthguard, it can be challenging to help them get started and get into the habit of keeping it on before a game. Still, it is one of the inexpensive ways to protect your child’s teeth, tongue, gums, and cheeks from trauma during extra-curricular activities. 

Orofacial injuries are a risk for participants of all ages, genders, and skill levels. Whether it’s organized and unorganized sports, at recreational and competitive levels, at school, or in kids’ leagues. While most dental injuries are sustained during collision and contact sports, they are prevalent in limited-contact, non-contact, and high-velocity activities.

Caring for your Mouthguards

Mouthguards come in many different options. According to the ADA Council of Scientific Affairs and Council on Advocacy for Access and Prevention, an ideal mouthguard should adequately fit the wearer’s mouth and accurately adapt to their oral structures. It’s also important that they’re made of resilient material approved by the FDA and easy to clean.

If your child is undergoing orthodontic treatment, talk with one of our orthodontists to ensure the mouthguard will fit over their appliances and not damage the device or harm your mouth if an impact occurs. 

Your child will know they have a good fit if it is comfortable, offers adequate coverage, and doesn’t interfere with speaking or breathing. The three most common types of mouthguards are stock (also called “pre-made”), custom-made, and mouth-formed. 

Sports Safety for Kids Mouths & Orthodontic Emergencies

Let Us Care For Your Smile At Sawgrass Orthodontics

At Sawgrass Orthodontics, We treat each of our patients as individuals. That’s why we make customized treatments to meet your family’s unique needs and interests. Please call us if you or someone you know is interested in orthodontic treatment. We proudly serve Weston, Sunrise and Surrounding Areas. We’d love to get you started on your smile journey. 

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