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You want to do what’s best for your kids, and getting them braces when they are young is beneficial. This is the best time to get their teeth to shift and move so that they have the space they need. Wearing braces now also reduces the risk of teeth moving back to their original position, which can happen if your child gets braces later in life. In this blog, we’ll show you the facts on what to expect for braces with sports. Let’s get cracking.
In addition to doing what’s best for their teeth, you are probably also making sure they are staying active and being social. This means getting them involved with sports. While there are some dangers in wearing braces while playing sports, there are ways to overcome them.
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Braces With Sports
- The first thing that needs to be considered is the type of braces your child is wearing. With the option of getting traditional braces or invisible liners, the guidelines for braces will differ. If your child has tradition metal braces, the risk of issues arises.
Guidelines for Metal Braces
- If your child has metal braces, then they are at an increased risk of issues, but this shouldn’t stop you from letting them play sports. Having your child wear a mouthguard is the best option when it comes to having metal braces and playing sports. This will reduce the chances of cuts and scrapes in the mouth, as well as wires or brackets getting broken.
- No matter what sport your child plays, whether it’s softball, baseball, soccer, basketball or karate or they participate in skiing, skateboarding or rollerblading, wearing a mouthguard is beneficial. If your child is a wrestler, it’s also a good idea to get them a mouthguard. If their head gets pushed into the mat, this could cause metal braces to cut their lips or the wires to get broken.
Play with Caution
- In addition to wearing a mouthguard, it’s also a good idea for your child to play with some caution. They don’t need to be any less aggressive or not give it their all, but it’s important for them to keep their heads in the game and stay focused. This will ensure that they are aware of what’s going on around them and be ready for anything that might come their way.
- If there’s an option to wear other safety gear, such as helmets with facemasks, which can be used for baseball, softball, skateboarding or rollerblading, then you might encourage them to put this on until they are finished with their treatment. Extra precautions and safety equipment are never a bad thing.
Finding the Right Mouthguard
- When it comes to finding the right mouthguard to wear with braces and following the guidelines, you won’t be looking for the same one as athletes who don’t have braces. In general, the type of mouthguard athletes wear is a “boil and bite” mouthpiece. This means that the guard is bought at the store, it is placed in boiling water, and then when it is cool enough, your child places it in their mouth so that it conforms to their teeth and fits snuggly in their mouth.
- The reason this won’t work for your child if they wear braces is that their teeth will be shifting and moving. The mouthguard may fit at the beginning of the season, but as the braces straighten their teeth, it may not work by the middle or the end of the season. When it comes to braces with sports and the mouthguard, this could make the protective device uncomfortable.
- The solution to this problem is asking your orthodontist for a special mouthguard that is designed specifically for your child and their braces. This will ensure that their mouth stays free from injury and the braces don’t get damaged while they are playing.
Difference Between a Traditional Mouthguard and an Orthodontic One
- The biggest differences between a traditional mouthguard and an orthodontic one are the material it’s made out of and their size. Orthodontic mouthguards are made from silicone and are created to cushion your child’s lips so that they don’t bump against their teeth. It will also protect the brackets and soften the impact if a ball or other object hits your child’s face.
Issues that Might Arise
- Some of the issues that might arise when wearing metal braces while playing sports include getting hit in the mouth. When that happens, the metal could dig into your child’s lips and cause injury. Not only will this be painful, but it could also lead to bacterial infections.
- In addition, a ball or other object hitting your child’s mouth could result in broken or damaged components on the braces. If a metal wire snaps, this could cut their mouth or their gums. It will also reduce how effective the braces are at straightening their teeth.
- It’s also possible that the bracket that affixes to your child’s teeth could get knocked loose. This may not be as common as a wire breaking, but it’s still something to consider. If your child has a mouthguard, it reduces the chances of any of these issues occurring.
- If damage does occur when your child is playing sports, you need to get into the orthodontist as soon as possible. Broken or damaged braces could lead to major problems. Depending on the type of hit your child received, this could have also loosened, cracked or broken teeth. Getting them in as soon as possible can correct the problem and ensure that their teeth are intact and able to move the way they are supposed to.
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Work with the Right Orthodontist
Not only is it beneficial to wear a mouthguard and the right protective gear when wearing braces with sports, but you also want to work with the right orthodontist. This will ensure that you are getting the right care and the best advice to keep your child’s mouth safe.
Dr. Adam Schulhof is a leader in lingual braces and cares about the wellbeing and safety of your child. He will make sure your kid has the right mouthguard to stay safe, as well as receives the best treatment.
Contact him today to get a complimentary consultation to find the best solution for your child’s orthodontic needs.
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Braces with Sport Guidelines 2020 | QUICK INFORMATION