March 21st has passed. Aside from a few snow flurries, spring has officially sprung. And with its arrival come longer days. More sunshine. And more reasons to get outside and recreate.
This means many of us will be getting out there to enjoy (and wreak havoc) on various outdoor recreational and sporting activities. And while we’re pretty diligent to protect our noggins with a helmet, whether it be snow skiing, biking or rollerblading, we’re still pretty nonchalant when it comes to protecting our teeth.
Each year about 3 million teeth get knocked out due to recreational and sports activities. And this number includes both the young and the young at heart. Folks like the middle-aged basketball wonder to the neighborhood skateboarder prodigy. To help reduce the number of dental injuries that occur every year, the American Dental Association and the Academy of Sports Dentistry put together a list of 30 sports and recreational activities that they recommend using mouth protection to help avoid possible dental injuries.
Aside from more obvious activities like football or boxing, this list includes snowboarding, skiing, soccer, horseback riding, basketball, and any activity that involves striking a ball with a stick or bat. Piñata parties aren’t on this list yet. Neither is golf, but this sport does play its role in causing plenty of teeth and mouth injuries, which are sustained at home by patients who are struck by another player’s club.
Ok, so you can’t wear a mouth guard all the time, but you can wear one (and if you have kids they should too) if you play any recreational sports, even pick-up games, or outdoor activities. Compared to the price of replacing a missing tooth, the price of a custom fitted sports mouth guard is very reasonable.
At $55 dollars, we offer Playsafe sports mouth guards (in a variety of colors!) that are custom designed by our dentists to offer both comfort and protection. Unlike the boil and bite mouthguards you can buy at the store, these mouthguards are fabricated to conform to each patient’s unique teeth and jawline. They feel good, and they look good, so there’s more hope that you, or your kids, will actually want to wear them.
If you or your family members plan on recreating this spring, be it in sports or outdoor activities, think about adding a custom sports mouthguard to your arsenal of personal protection. You’ll be doing your part to lower next year’s estimated missing teeth number. Just call our office at (206) 524-1000 to set up an appointment or schedule online.
P.S. Avoid possible future dental injuries. You have good 32 reasons to wear a sports mouth guard… unless you’ve had your wisdom teeth removed, then you have 28 reasons.