August 20, 2020
With classes starting again at local schools, we know that the start of the fall sports season will be here soon. For that matter, winter sports will be practicing before we know it, too.
That’s makes this a good time to remind athletes of all ages to play hard and play safe. After all, we want you to keep your winning smiles long after you leave the field or the court.
Each year, an estimated 3 million teeth are injured during youth sports, according to the American Dental Association. The two sports that cause the most dental injuries might not be the two you expect, either. Basketball and baseball are the sports cause the most dental problems for youth, according to the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry.
Both of those organizations and other professional dental groups recommend that anyone who plays a high-impact sport should wear a mouthguard for practices and competitions.
Some of these sports, such as football, already require protection mouthguards. (This is also why they report fewer dental injuries than other sports.)
So, who should be wearing mouthguards? If your sports involves changing speeds or directions, jumping, physical contact with other players, throwing or catching objects, or any combination of those things, then you are playing a high-impact sport.
Injuries can be the result of collisions between participants, being hit with a ball or other object, or a fall. Having a mouthguard is like wearing a seat belt in your family car. It won’t stop an accident from happening, but it can minimize the damage if something does happen.
The kind of mouthguard you wear makes a difference, too.
Stock mouthguards can be uncomfortable to wear. They come in standards sizes, which may or may not match the shape and size of your mouth.
Boil-and-bite mouthguards are found in many stores. These are a step up from stock mouthguards. However, they can be bulky. This can make them uncomfortable as well. These can interfere with your ability to speak, and some people find breathing can be difficult because of the size of these mouthguards.
At our Jacksonville office, you and your loved ones can get custom-fitted mouthguards. These offer better protection (much like a five-point harness offers better protection than the standard seat belt in a family vehicle) than the boil-and-bite style.
Since these are smaller, you can speak, breathe, and drink without having to remove the mouthguard. They are also more comfortable, which means you are more likely to wear it when you take the field.
Sports should be enjoyable to play. Wearing the right protective gear — including athletic mouthguards — makes it more likely you’ll be able to keep playing for a long time.
PLAN A DENTAL CLEANING FOR THE NEW SCHOOL YEAR
August 6, 2020
If you haven’t already done so, you’ll probably be gathering supplies for school in the days ahead. While you are getting paper and pens, notebooks and art supplies, backpacks and new outfits, we recommend you schedule a dental exam at our office.
It may not seem like it at first, but a healthy smile can make a difference in how your child performs in the classroom. We aren’t saying nice teeth will guarantee good grades, but poor oral health can distract a child who should be focused on that day’s lesson or completing a task.
By bringing your family to River Oaks Dental for a back-to-school checkup, you can avoid those distractions and give your children a better opportunity for success in the classroom. Call 904-348-0416 to plan your visit to our Jacksonville, FL family dentist office.
PROTECT YOUR FAVORITE SMILES
Children’s dentistry is an integral part of what we do every day. From the time your youngsters get their first teeth, we want to help you encourage healthy habits to maintain their smiles.
This starts at home with a consistent daily routine. We suggest following the American Dental Association’s recommendations. That means brushing and flossing daily.
To be more specific, it means brushing twice daily for two minutes each time. Using toothpaste with fluoride and a soft-bristled toothbrush, clean your teeth on all sides. Then, once per day, use dental floss or a water flosser to remove bacteria, plaque, and food particles from between your teeth and gums.
The ADA also recommends regular professional dental cleanings and exams. None of us brush and floss exactly like we should every time. A professional checkup gives our team a chance to remove plaque and tartar buildup. At the same time, we can find cavities and gum infections as well. And we would much rather find these problems today than for you to get a call from your kid’s school reporting that they have been complaining of a toothache.
To take things a step further (a little “extra credit”), you can get fluoride treatments and dental sealants for your family. Fluoride is a mineral that makes teeth stronger. Dental sealants coat teeth to create a barrier between them and cavity-causing bacteria. Either or both will reduce your family’s risk of tooth decay.
EDUCATION & ORAL HEALTH
The Children’s Dental Health Project has put together a page of information related to the effects of oral health on education. Here are a few highlights:
• In a national survey, 14 percent of children 6 to 12 years old reported having a toothache in the previous six months.
SMILES FOR SUCCESS
We won’t promise that a dental cleaning will turn your child into the next valedictorian. However, we have seen that poor oral health can be an obstacle to success in school. Don’t let that become an issue for your kids.