According to the National Youth Sports Safety Foundation (NYSSF), 15 million dental injuries and 5 million cases of traumatically lost teeth occur every year. It has been estimated that in just one season, an athlete participating in a contact sport has a 10% chance of experiencing a facial or oral injury. In fact, close to half of all injuries seen in our office are sports related.
Sports mouth guards are soft plastic dental appliances which protect teeth, jaws, lips, cheeks, tongue and gums from damage caused by accidental traumatic blows and collisions.
Bruxism is a habit of grinding or clenching the teeth, usually during sleep. When a person has bruxism, the tips of the teeth look flat. People can clench or grind so often and so hard that over time their teeth become sensitive. They experience jaw pain, tense muscles and headaches along with excessive wear on their teeth. An occlusal guard – made of hard acrylic – can absorb the force of biting and protect the enamel from excessive wear.
What are the signs?
- Teeth look flat or have wear facets
- Sore jaw
- Sensitive teeth
- Worn or fractured tooth enamel
- Loose teeth
- Facial pain