According to multiple studies by medical experts, more and more children are starting to pick up sports at a younger age. However, the same medical studies have shown that a proportionate number of children are getting injured because their bodies are structurally ill-prepared for playing certain sports for long periods of time. Although injuries like ACL tears grab the attention of most people, the American Dental Association (ADA) says that dental emergencies are also a common sports injury: Numerous surveys of sports-related dental injuries have documented that participants of all ages, genders and skill levels are at risk of sustaining dental injuries in sporting activities, including organized and unorganized sports at both recreational and competitive levels. While collision and contact sports, such as boxing, have inherent injury risks, dental injuries are also prevalent in non-contact activities and exercises, such as gymnastics and skating.
A common dental emergency in sports is a knocked-out tooth due to an errant elbow or other blow to the area of the mouth. In such cases, the ADA advises the child to pick up the tooth by the crown, store the tooth in a container of milk, and immediately seek the help of a dentist in returning the tooth into the mouth.
Sadly, very few dentists offer their services after office hours, or are not immediately available at the time of the dental emergency. When faced with a knocked-out tooth, time is of the essence as the faster a tooth is implanted, the higher the chance of saving the tooth. With that in mind, if your child suffers a tooth loss from a sporting accident, take him or her to an emergency dentist in Philadelphia, such as Dr. Gerald Regni, DMD, for urgent care and treatment.
The ADA further advises parents of young athletes to bring their children to a reputable pediatric dentist in Philadelphia for consultation before the child starts a new sport, to be educated on the positive effects of using mouthguards.
Surveillance studies of mouthguard users and nonusers have consistently shown that mouthguards offer significant protection against sports-related injuries to the teeth and soft tissues. Mouthguards provide a resilient, protective surface to distribute and dissipate forces on impact, thereby minimizing the severity of traumatic injury to the hard or soft tissues.
A trusted pediatric dentist can recommend the type of mouthguard that would be appropriate for a fledgling young athlete.
(Article Excerpt and Image from Statement on Athletic Mouthguards, American Dental Association)