Posts for: March, 2019
Spring has sprung. And while the weather may not have gotten the memo just yet, warm weather is on the way. With warmer weather and longer daylight hours, come spring sports and more time spent playing outside. As you gear up for your next practice or game, don’t forget your child’s mouthguard!
Each year, about 5 million Americans lose teeth in sports-related injuries. Approximately 39% of all dental injuries are sports-related. (https://www.nata.org/sites/default/files/dental-injury-handout.pdf). These injuries can include avulsed teeth (complete displacement), cracked teeth, fractured roots and tooth intrusion (displacement of the tooth into the alveolar bone), as well as fractured crowns and lip and cheek injuries.
But, playing sports doesn’t have to give your child a hockey-player smile. Using a mouthguard can significantly reduce your child’s risk of obtaining a dental injury. Children playing any contact sports, such as field hockey, ice hockey, football, boxing and lacrosse are required to wear mouthguards. But the American Academy of Pediatric Dentists recommends that children wear mouthguards for most sports, including: baseball, basketball, soccer, softball, wrestling, volleyball and gymnastics, acrobatics, boxing, discus throwing, handball, martial arts, racquetball, rugby, shot putting, skateboarding, skiing, skydiving, squash, surfing, volleyball, water polo, and wrestling. According to the AAPD (click here to read full article), baseball and basketball have been shown to have the highest number of sports-related dental injuries in children between that ages of seven to 17 years. Baseball had the highest incident of dental injuries within the seven to 12 year-old age group and basketball led the way between the 13-17 year-old age group.
A mouthguard may be especially important for those with braces or dental work, but they are a great idea for anyone wanting to protect their teeth from potential trauma. Mouthguards act as a buffer for potential damage, but also provide a barrier between teeth/braces and cheeks, or between lips and tongue, which can limit soft tissue damage, as well.
Dental mouthguards are classified into three types:
1) Stock mouthguards - can be purchased in sporting goods and drug stores, come pre-formed and ready to wear.
2) Boil-and-bite mouthguards - most commonly used, these mouthguards are immersed in boiling water and formed in the mouth by using finger, tongue, and biting pressure.
3) Custom-made mouth guards - designed by your dentist and are the best fitting and offer most protection and comfort.
All three types of mouthguards provide different levels of protection, but also come at different price-points. You should discuss your options with your pediatric dentist to determine which option will fit your needs best. Whatever your child’s sport and whatever your budget, there is a mouthguard option available. Don’t sacrifice the safety of your child’s smile. Wear a mouthguard!
If you have questions, or would like to discuss which mouth protection option is best for your child, Anderson Pediatric Dentistry is here to help. Call our office today at 864-760-1440 and let us give you Something to Smile About!
It’s the day of the year when people come together to celebrate their Irish descent. Towns go green, literally- from green clothes to green rivers and even green food and beverages. The ironic part is that most of the people celebrating aren’t even Irish and don’t even know who St. Patrick was, (Click here to learn about St. Patrick) but that doesn’t stop people from being “Irish for the day.” It is, after all, a really fun holiday.
According to CNBC, emergency dental visits skyrocket by 77% the day after St. Patrick’s Day. The information was gleaned from analysis from Sikka Software, which found that March 18 is consistently one of the busiest 10 days of the year for dentist. It goes without saying that alcohol plays a large role in this spike, with bar fights and face plants being responsible for many of the chipped or missing teeth cases that dentist will see. Apparently, some people take the term “fighting Irish” a bit too far.
Luckily for Anderson Pediatric Dentistry, most of our patients won’t be involved in the more extreme St. Patrick’s Day shenanigans. However, we thought it was a great time to review what to do if your luck runs out and you find yourself facing a dental emergency. Remember, sometimes the tooth can be saved if handled appropriately.
We encourage you to become familiar with the information below so that you will know what to do if you find yourself faced with a dental trauma.
If a tooth is knocked out:
1) Pick the tooth up by the crown (the part you bite with) and DO NOT touch the root (the two little legs that go in the gums).
2) Adults and older children that have knocked out a permanent tooth, gently rinse it in clean water and place it back in the socket the right way. Apply gauze and pressure to hold it in place until getting to the dentist office.
If you are unsure of the proper placement, you can place the tooth in your cheek and hold it there until getting to the dentist office. The saliva will clean the root and keep it moist.
For small children and baby teeth, do not place the tooth back in the socket. This can damage the permanent tooth below. Since most small children cannot hold the tooth in their cheek without swallowing it, placing it in a container of milk and heading to the dentist office is the best option. Make sure to bring the tooth with you. (If the parent is comfortable doing so, he or she can place it in his/her own cheek to keep it moist and in saliva.)
Remember, we want to keep the tooth moist. Saliva is the best option, followed by milk. Do not wrap the tooth in a napkin and allow it to dry.
3) Call our office and let us know you are on the way! You need to see the dentist as soon as possible for the best chance at saving the tooth.
What to do if a tooth is chipped:
If a tooth is chipped, try to find any pieces that have come off, as sometimes it’s possible to reattach them. Make an appointment for an office visit as soon as possible and bring the pieces with you.
Anytime there is a severe injury, loss of consciousness or uncontrollable bleeding, seek help immediately from the Emergency Room. For less traumatic injuries, call our office at 864-760-1440 to schedule a time to be seen as soon as possible. Often, a quick phone conversation can help us to determine the next step. Cheers!