April is National Facial Protection Month
Make Protecting Your Mouth, Face, and Braces a Year-Round Priority
Even though April is beginning to wind down, ARCH Orthodontics would like to take another opportunity to acknowledge National Facial Protection Month. We encourage athletes of all ages to make every effort to take great care of your face and your smile — every month — no matter what sport you suit up for.
Your ARCH Orthodontist will always advocate for adequate athletic facial protection. Taking the proper safeguards are crucial — especially when you’re undergoing an orthodontic treatment. We want to avoid damage to your braces at all costs!
Facts About Facial Injuries
Check out these interesting facial injuries statistics courtesy of the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons:
Fact #1) 10% of maxillofacial injuries involve the cheekbone.
Fact #2) 7- to 11-year-olds are most vulnerable to sports-related mouth injuries.
Fact #3) Males are two times more likely to incur an injury — the most common being the two front teeth.
FACT #4) $500 million are spent annually to replace and repair injured or knocked out teeth.
FACT #5) 13 to 39% of all dental injuries occur from playing sports.
No matter what sport or sports you choose to participate in, you should always wear a mouthguard. Most coaches in organized sports require players to wear a mouthguard, but you should even consider doing so when riding your bike or just playing with other friends in the neighborhood.
What Kind of Sports Facial Protection Should I Use?
It’s important to understand your options when making the oh-so-important decision to protect your smile and your face. These options are your best bet to stay safe:
Full Facial Guard
Full facial guards are extra strong and sturdy. They are most commonly used in football, where intense impact is pretty much a guarantee. Did you know that even if you protect your face from potential damage your braces may still be vulnerable? This can leave you with painful cuts to your mouth. That’s why it’s always a smart idea to consider added protection!
Mouthguards do an excellent job at adding an additional security to your smile. There are two kinds to choose from:
1) Boil-and-bite: These are available at most retail stores and are boiled in water at home. You put the guard in your mouth while it’s still warm, bite down gently, and form an impression. They’re popular because they’re readily available, however, they don’t necessarily offer the best fit.
2) Custom mouthguards: A custom mouthguard offers an excellent safeguard for your braces because they ensure a more comfortable fit, with built in layers for even more durability. These types of guards are also endorsed by the American Dental Association, specifically for orthodontic patients because of their extreme protection power.
We hope you always make sure to protect your braces and your mouth when engaging in any of your favorite sporting activities! Please give your ARCH Orthodontics office a call if you need help deciding what kind of facial protection you need to keep you and your braces safe and comfortable on the field, on the court, or on the rink.
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