If you are on a contact sports team, you'll be putting your teeth at a greater risk of injury. It's important for you to take precautions so you can decrease your chances of having something happen to one or more of your teeth while you are playing. This article will offer you proactive advice for protecting your teeth and give you first aid information so you know what to do if something happens.
Protect your mouth
You should put some extra thought into choosing the best mouth guard. One option is to get a mouth guard from a sporting goods store. You will purchase the guard and follow the instructions for fitting it to your mouth by using warm water. The problem with this is the quality of the mouth guard can vary significantly.
You can also go directly to your dentist for a mouth guard, and this lets you know that you are getting one made with high quality materials and that's dentist approved.
Be prepared for dental emergencies
A good way for you to be prepared for an emergency is to carry a dental first aid kit in your sports gear. It should have gauze, a bottle of water, over-the-counter pain reliever, an instant ice pack, a plastic baggie and the phone numbers of your regular dentist and a 24-hour emergency dentist.
How to deal with a dental emergency
If you end up with a knocked out tooth, act quickly and correctly so you will have a good chance of having the tooth be saved. Otherwise, you will need to have the tooth replaced and this can be a costly, as well as potentially painful process. In fact, it may require the assistance of an oral surgeon, like those at Altoona Center For Oral Surgery & Maxillofacial Surgery, in some cases.
If you have knocked a tooth out, pick it up right away and rinse any dirt off with your own spit. If possible, push it back down into the socket and bite down on some gauze until you get to the dentist's office. You should also take some anti-inflammatory and put an ice pack on your cheek to help with swelling. Don't touch the root of the tooth because it is very easy to permanently damage. If you can't get it in the socket, carry it in your mouth between your gum and cheek, or put it in a plastic baggie in your own spit.
Now that you know how to prepare for playing contact sports, you may have a better chance of playing without causing permanent damage to any of your teeth.