The end of the school year is approaching fast. We’ll have warmer weather and more daylight to spending with family and friends.
For many families, this means days spent traveling from one game to the next. Baseball, softball, basketball, and soccer are just a few of the sports leagues that fill summer calendars here in Lexington, KY.
As great as sports are for encouraging kids to be active and healthy, they also come with some risk of injury. We all understand this, it’s why many sports require protective gear in order to participate.
But there’s one piece of equipment that every athlete should be wearing — an athletic mouthguard. We will be happy to make one for you at any Beaumont Family Dentistry location.
We would much rather make one for your star athlete today then treat a dental emergency tomorrow, although we are prepared for those as well.
It Can Happen in an Instant
No one wants a dental emergency to happen, and yet an estimated 3 million teeth are knocked out of their sockets every year during youth sports, according to the American Dental Association.
And do you know which sports cause the most dental emergencies? It’s not football. It’s not boxing, either.
For kids under 13, it’s baseball, and for kids 14 to 17, it’s basketball.
Like a seat belt, a mouthguard won’t stop an accident from taking place. However, also like a seat belt, it may minimize the extent of the injury that occurs as a result of that accident.
If you child isn’t wearing a mouthguard then he or she is 60 times more likely to suffer a dental injury than a child who is wearing a mouthguard.
There’s a reason the ADA recommends wearing a mouthguard during all high-impact sports (pretty much anything with running, jumping, and/or objects flying through the air).
Be Ready to Take Action
Even with the best precautions, dental emergencies can occur. Teeth can and will get broken and or knocked out.
When that happens, we want to give you some tips for what to do. First and foremost, you should wear latex or vinyl gloves when you are assisting anyone with a dental emergency.
If a tooth is broken …
Try to find the broken piece or pieces, if possible. Next, the person with the broken tooth should rinse his or her mouth with water.
If the bleeding continues, use gauze to soak up the blood. When the bleeding stops, rinse the mouth again to clean the blood away.
Be aware that broken teeth can be sharp, so you will want to cover the edge with gauze or dental wax until you can see one of our dentists.
If a tooth has been knocked out …
Find the tooth and pick it up by the crown. Avoid touching the roots if at all possible. Again, the person missing the tooth will want to rinse his or her mouth, soak up any blood, and repeat until the bleeding has stopped.
Place the tooth back in its socket. If it will stay, leave it there until you see a dentist. If it won’t stay, keep it in milk until you see the dentist.
In either of these situations, an over-the-counter pain reliever may help ease the pain. An ice or cold pack also could numb the area and reduce swelling.
These are just two possible emergency dental situations — which can happen anytime and anywhere. Just in case, keep our phone numbers handy if you are in or near Lexington, KY:
That way you can get help as soon as possible. If you are calling outside of our regular hours, listen for the number on our answering machine so you can contact our on-call doctor, who can advise you on what to do next.