Playing summer sports? A mouth guard is a great way to better protect your kid’s teeth!
Many kids are involved in summertime sports, and with child athletes being 60 times more likely to suffer a facial trauma from sports, a very small percentage of them actually wear mouth guards!
At our Langhorne office, Dr. Mel A. Burchman provides kids with protective mouth guards so they can play hard and still be protected! Learn more about mouth guards for your kids in today’s post!
Why Your Child Should Wear a Mouthguard
Kids are notorious for putting up a fight when it comes to protective gear — anything that appears “dorky,” “uncool,” or something their friends don’t do, they don’t want to be a part of! Unfortunately, bike helmets, skate helmets, and mouth guards all fall under the umbrella!
So, how can you help your kid understand the importance of mouth guards?
Let’s look at their effectiveness first!
According to the American Dental Association (ADA), mouth guards help prevent over 200,000 oral and facial injuries each year, with dental injuries being the most common type of facial injury in sports.
Mouthguards provide protection and help soften the impact to the face that may cause broken or chipped teeth, jaw damage, and cuts to the lips and mouth.
The takeaway is — not that we have to win over a parent — they protect your child’s mouth and jaw when they’re playing sports and save you from a future of large medical and dental bills in costly procedures.
Winning Over Your Child!
Mouth guards are not always required, and if they’re not, kids are just not going to wear them. Below are a couple of ways to help win your kids over to mouth guards.
Communicate their importance!
This may seem like a no-brainer, but perhaps in between all the nagging that happens reminding them to wear their mouth guard, your message gets lost. Instead, have a casual conversation with your child, dinnertime is always good, and explain their importance. Talk about how injuries and accidents happen when we least expect it — come from a place of concern and love and not one from fear or control.
Help make a mouth guard a habit.
Maybe, again, things get lost in translation and it’s not that your child doesn’t want to wear a mouth guard, but it’s because they’re a kid and they forget! When they’re off to practice, help get them in practice of throwing in their mouth guard with their water bottle and other items needed for practice or the game.
The world can be a scary place and the job of a parent is to protect them without completely shielding them. So, without scaring them or creating a traumatic memory (showing them a Youtube video of sports facial traumas could be a little too much) be honest about the consequences. To further instill your point ask if your local dentist would talk to your child about the importance of mouth guards during their next teeth cleaning.
Mouth guards, though not mandatory, are needed to protect your child from facial traumas and injuries. Help win over your child to wear their mouth guard by communicating with them, making a mouth guard a habit, and being honest about the consequences.