Mouth and jaw injuries are fairly common in sports. A majority of these injuries often stem from playing sports like basketball, baseball, soccer, softball, field hockey and gymnastics. More often than not, it’s the front teeth that are usually affected, followed by damage to the cheeks and tongue.
In order to avoid these injuries, it is crucial to use the appropriate protection. Depending on the particular sport, this may be a helmet or a mouth guard. Helmets are suitable for sports like biking, skating, hockey and football. Be sure that the helmet fits correctly in order to gain maximum utility and protection.
Mouth guards protect not only the teeth but also the lips and the tongue. The best type of mouth guard to use is one that has been custom-fitted to the athlete by a dentist. Because of the custom fit, the mouth guard can provide better protection. If a custom mouth guard is unavailable, the next best option is a boil and bite mouth guard which sports stores sell. Make sure to regularly clean and maintain your protective gear.
But despite the use of these protective gear, mouth injuries can still happen. In such cases, an emergency dentist lists down first aid treatments and tips that will help prevent further damage and even save a tooth.
If your tooth has been knocked out, make sure to hold it by the crown and then rinse it in water. Avoid scrubbing or removing the attached tissue. Store it in a container filled with milk and head to the dentist at once.
If the tooth is broken, rinse your mouth with warm water and apply cold compress to the area. Afterwards, go to the dentist immediately.
If you bit your cheek or tongue and there is swelling, apply cold compress to the affected area. If your cheek or tongue does not stop bleeding immediately, go to a dentist or a hospital for emergency treatment.
If an athlete is possibly suffering from a jaw injury or fracture, he or she must immediately see either a doctor or a dentist. On the way to seeking emergency treatment, a cold compress should be applied to the affected area to reduce swelling.
While it is not possible to totally eliminate the chances of getting injured while playing sports, by wearing the appropriate safety gear, knowing the first aid actions that need to be performed for each type of mouth injury, and seeking immediate treatment from a dentist, further damage can be prevented.